One unanticipated outcome of the pandemic has been the great resignation that is sweeping across pretty much all industries right now. People are leaving their jobs due to burnout, poor response to Covid-19, opportunities that allow them to continue working from home, and because over the last two years, they have had time to reassess their priorities and realize they want a better work-life balance. If you have found yourself in this group of people who are in the midst of a job search, here are the best interview questions to ask in your next job interview.
Asking Questions in an Interview
Too often people forget that an interview is not just an opportunity for an organization to decide if you are the right candidate for a job, it is also an opportunity for you to decide if that job is the right fit for you. Besides being able to get a vibe from the people you are meeting with, asking questions during an interview lets you decide if the job and organization are what you are looking for in your search for something new. The best interview questions can also send a message to a prospective employer about the type of employee you would be if hired.
There is always a chance towards the end of the interview after the interviewers have finished asking their questions for you to ask a few questions yourself. Do not waste this opportunity to find out more about the job, the environment you would be working in, the people you would be working with, and/or the organization itself. The best interview questions can help to highlight some of your skills and qualities. So if while asking your questions there is an opportunity for further conversation, do not be afraid to talk back and forth with the interviewers.
READ MORE: 6 Simple Ways to Improve Self Motivation
The Best Interview Questions to Ask
When interviewing for a job, the best interview questions do one of two things. The best interview questions either gather some information about whether the job would be a good fit for you or they convey a little something to the interviewers about you as an employee. Ask questions that tell you more about what the job would really look like on a day-to-day basis. Ask about the culture and environment of the job. And ask questions that show you are conscientious, that you have looked up information about the organization and the job, and/or that show your genuine interest in the position.
Start by thinking about what you want to know about the job. Are you curious about your coworkers? What do you want to know about the organization as a whole? These sorts of things make the best interview questions. Do not worry about the nitty-gritty details at this point.
Some of the best interview questions you should ask will be very industry or opportunity-specific, so spend some time thinking about what you really want to know. It may make sense for you to ask about how work will be assigned to employees but does not necessarily make sense for someone else to ask that question. If you need some help getting started with some questions that work for a wide variety of job opportunities, here are 15 of the best interview questions to ask the next time you land a job interview.
- Can you give examples of the type of projects / tasks / [insert appropriate term based on your industry here] I would be working on?
- What do you think are some of the biggest challenges for someone in this position?
- Is this a new or existing position?
- What does a typical day look like?
- What do you expect the first 30 days to look like for this position?
- How would I be trained?
- What are the performance expectations for this position in the first year?
- How is this position’s performance evaluated?
- What do you like most about working here?
- Do you expect the responsibilities of this position to change in the next 12 months?
- What goals are the department/organization currently working on?
- Who would this position work the most closely with and can you tell me a little about that person/those people?
- How would you describe the work environment? Are things typically done more collaboratively or do people tend to work independently?
- Are there opportunities for growth in this position? Are there any examples of career advancement beginning with this position or one like it?
- How do you think an employee in this position could best impact this organization?
A Few Dos and Don’ts
Asking questions is great because it can help show off your personality a little and give you a chance to find out some important pieces of information. The best interview questions show off a little of you. With that being said, there are definitely a few things you do not want to do when it comes to your turn to ask the questions.
Do not ask obvious questions about the position or the organization. You should not ask things like “what does this company do?” or “what is this position responsible for?” You need to do a little research beforehand and make sure you have thoroughly read the job description and that you have checked out the organization’s and, if applicable, department’s web pages. This shows that you have put in some effort. It is totally okay to ask clarifying questions. Just be sure not to seem like you have no clue what is involved with the position.
Do not ask a bunch of questions about time off, benefits, salary, or flexible work schedules. These kinds of questions are premature at this point and do not tell you anything about the job itself. While those things are all part of whether or not the job is a good fit for you, they should be included in the next step and not this first step of being interviewed. If offered the job, that is the time to discuss prior commitments, how time off works, and the logistics of your daily schedule.
Avoid asking questions that can be answered with a simple yes or no. You want to find out real information that can help you determine if this is a good fit for you. The best interview questions make the people you are interviewing with give a little explanation with their answer. Think short answer over true or false questions. You want to get the interviewers talking not only so that you can find out more information but also so you can get a sense of their personalities and how they see the organization.
You can pick up on a lot of nonverbal clues about the job and the organization’s culture when you get to listen to someone talk about their job. The best interview questions require a longer explanation, which can then provide you with an opportunity for a back and forth conversation with you and the interviewer, which is a further opportunity to show your personality.
You may get an interview and take the first job that you are offered because it is the perfect fit. That is amazing. However, you might find yourself in a number of interviews before you are offered a job or find something that suits you. Hopefully, some of the best interview questions here can help you find the perfect opportunity for you and then help you land it.
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