10 GREAT questions to ask at an interview
An interview is a two way process, If you have been invited in for an interview for a position you have applied for then you will know that you have some relevant skills for the position, but will the position or company for that matter be suitable for you? You will have already done your homework on the company inviting you in for the interview so how do you find out the nitty gritty details that you want to know about the company, manager and team? You find out by preparing some well thought out questions to ask the hiring manager during the interview.
Towards the end of an interview the hiring manager will normally ask if you have any questions about the company, the particular role or team etc. We really recommend not asking questions like “How much will I get paid?”, “How many days holiday days will I get off in the year?”, “Do you offer sick pay?” or “Will I get a company car?” etc. These sort of questions will not get you anywhere, all these details will be discussed at a later date should you get past the first interview of course. You will already know what the company offers in the way of products and services through the preparation and you will probably have read or talked to the hiring manager about the company history and structure so there is no need to ask questions on this either (Unless you want something clarifying of course). Use these questions to find out the details you need to give you an idea of what it would be like to work for this company, with this team and just as importantly with the hiring manager, after all he or she will be your boss if you get the job.
- How would you describe a typical working day/week for this particular position?
- What challenges will the new post holder face?
- What are the teams strengths and weaknesses?
- What are the teams goals over the next tear? …. and 5 years?
- What does the company offer in the way of personal development and skill sharpening?
- How does the company reward or recognise outstanding work and excellence?
- How would your team describe you as a manager?
- What makes this company stand apart from the competition?
- How would you describe your ideal candidate for this position?
- How do I compare to the other people you have interviewed so far?
You will notice all of these questions begin with a what or a how, these types of questions will keep the hiring manager talking and as long as you can build a good rapport throughout the interview then the hiring manager will see you have good preparation and communication skills. You do not have to ask all of these questions and you do not have to ask them in the written way, they are a guide. You will find the questions you will want to ask by reading through job descriptions, company websites and brochures and by even talking to other people who work for the organisation. Bear in mind that it is just as important for you to know that the company is right for you as it is for the company to know you are right for them and a good line of questions will certainly help you make up your mind about the company and position that you are interviewing for.