1. What do you think are our core values?
If you haven’t researched these before the interview, don’t panic (although you really should do this). Values are usually apparent from the way the company goes about its business. Values are the ideals that a company strives towards. If goals are what companies hope to accomplish, values are the way that they want to do it. Commonly occurring company values include innovation, providing value, caring for customers and acting with integrity.
Clues to the company values can be found everywhere, from their website and social media to the way you were greeted at reception. Share your honest impression of the company.
2. What do you think is our main product?
A company’s product may not be a physical thing. They may provide a service that is less easy to define. Also, a company’s product may not be obvious. What is a movie theater’s product? Is it the movie, the popcorn or the experience of a great night out? The real question is, what do customers expect from this company? If you understand that, then you stand a good chance of fitting into the company’s culture.
3. Who do you think are our customers?
There are two main types of customer: retail (ordinary people) and commercial (other businesses). This distinction is crucial and affects the way the company goes about its business. For retail customers, there will be clues to the answer in the storefront. For example, a fine dining restaurant will have different customers than that of a fast food joint. What type of person spends their money here, and what type of service might they expect? For business customers, you need to know a little about the type of service provided. Is it something suited to small businesses or big clients?
4. Why do you think our company is a success?
You have to do research before an interview, in case you get a question like this. What does the company do? Success is usually because the company offers something that no one else does, or because they offer it in a more efficient way than their rivals. Companies also succeed because they provide an excellent quality of service. As your role will almost certainly impact service, it’s usually safe to focus on this.
5. How do you feel our company could be better?
If you have been a customer of the company (for example, you have purchased something in the store), you can offer a little consumer feedback here. Feel free to offer one or two actionable suggestions for improvements, without being too critical of your experience. If you don’t have any suggestions, it’s okay to say so. Ask the interviewer to talk you through the customer experience and the current plans to make improvements.
6. What do you know about our company?
The interviewer is trying to make sure you did some research before applying. They don’t want to hire a candidate who is sending their resume out 100x a day without even looking where they are applying. Make sure you know a few facts about the company, take a little time to research beforehand, as this question is bound to come up. If you can compliment the company or explain why you are excited to be interviewing with them in particular, it’ll make your answer even better.