Careers advice of the month

What questions should I ask at the end of an interview?

I’m finding quite a few candidates are asking me what questions they should ask at the end of an interview.  You can research questions on the internet, so I’m not going to list them all!  Instead, I will give you a few examples and talk about the nature of your questions and why you would ask them in the context of an interview.

Remember, an interview is a two-way process.

Research!  Use the internet to find out everything you can about the company and the people and try and visualise yourself in the role.  From your research, some questions should naturally arise.

Ask questions that genuinely interest you and help you make a decision as to whether you would like to work there.

Think about your past experience, think about things you would like to achieve, how would you like to grow in a role?

Here are some of my favourite questions candidates ask:

What are the biggest challenges of this role?
This might help you determine if the role is not challenging enough or too challenging for you.  It will also give you a chance to sell yourself.  

If the interviewer gives an example situation, if applicable you can give your own example of when you had to deal with a similar challenge.  If you don’t have a similar challenge you can give an example of a different one that was new to you at the time and how you dealt with it.

The examples you give, demonstrate your abilities.  Try to think about how you work, what inspires you, what ‘uninspires’ you.  Ask yourself, ‘how do I work’?

Try not to rehearse your examples too much, otherwise they will lack personality and the interviewer will see straight though you.

What are your expectations of the person in this role?
In other words, what are they expecting you to achieve in your first year?  This is your chance to determine if the client’s expectations and your expectations are realistic and align.  This is also something you can reflect upon in an appraisal should you get the job and want to discuss what you have achieved in your first year.

What do you enjoy most about working here?
This is an opportunity for you to hear all the positives and good things about working for a company.

Lastly, go into an interview as ‘you’ because if you go in and pretend to be someone else, you’ll have to keep up the ‘somebody else’ persona for rather a long time!  The perfect competency based interviews are those that are ‘real and genuine’.

 

Added on 14 April 2016