Many job seekers spend so much time preparing answers to common job interview questions that they fail to think about what questions they might have themselves. You might sail through the interview and then freeze like a deer in headlights when the interviewer asks if you have any questions. You can avoid this embarrassing moment by preparing ahead of time. Here’s a look at several things you can ask at your next job interview.
How would you describe the workplace culture?
Culture fit is an essential element for many candidates today. While you can do some research and read through various online employer review boards, this may only tell half of the story. The best way to get an accurate view of what the workplace culture is like is to ask at your interview. Chances are that your interviewer has worked for the company for several years, so he should have no problem answering this question. This information can give you insight into what it’s like to work for the company.
Do you offer any professional development opportunities?
If your goal of seeking a new job is to advance your career, then future professional development opportunities are crucial. Don’t be afraid to ask the interviewer about potential career development opportunities in the company. It shows your initiative and your willingness to grow with the company. More importantly, the answer to this question may help you decide if you want to work for the company or not. If the interviewer provides a general response, don’t be afraid to ask them to be more specific about what opportunities are available.
When can I expect to hear back from you?
Sometimes the interviewer will explain their hiring process and give you a general idea of when you can expect to hear back from them. If your interviewer doesn’t provide this information, make sure you ask at the end of your interview. The last thing you want to do is to go home wondering when, or if, you will hear back from the prospective employer. Knowing a basic timeline is especially beneficial if you have multiple job offers you are considering.
How does the company measure success?
Typically, an interviewer will explain the job duties and let you know what the expectations are for the job. What the interviewer often fails to discuss is how success is measured. Without this understanding, it can be impossible for you to know if you can be successful on the job. The interviewer should provide you with information about how the company offers employee feedback and what tools they use to measure workplace performance. The answer to this question will give you a better idea of what your on-the-job expectations are.
What is the most challenging part of the job?
If given the opportunity, be sure to ask this question early in the interview. Understanding the unique challenges of the position can help you provide answers and examples that show that you are up for the challenge. If you don’t have the chance to ask this question early in the interview, be sure to ask it at the end. The response the interviewer provides can provide valuable insight to use when writing a thank your note or if you are called back in for a second interview.
What are the company’s future goals?
The last thing you want to do is to work for a company that is falling apart? Ask your interviewer what the goals are for the company in the next five or ten years. Not only will this shed some light into the stability of the company, but it will help you determine if the company is a good fit for you. If you’ve done your research and have a specific question about the future of the company, now is the time to ask it. This step will show the interviewer that you took the time to learn more about the company before your interview.
Can you describe the day-to-day responsibilities of the job?
It can be challenging to get a clear understanding of what the job entails by just a job description and interview. If by the end of your meeting, you still feel unclear about the exact duties of the position, be sure to ask your interviewer to describe what a typical work day would look like. Your goal of this question is to find out what the most common duties are for the position. Not only does this question show your interest in the job, but the answer can help you decide if the job is the right fit for you.