10 Smart Questions You Can Ask in An Interview & Questions to Avoid to Make the Right Impressions on the Interviewers

Many times it appears that most candidates for a job interview think and believe it is not in their place to ask questions and are rather content to have the interviewers do all the asking. These days job interviews are a two way thing and requires questions and inputs from both sides of the table.

While it may seem that the employer holds all the aces in these times of high unemployment rate employers still are on the lookout for prospective candidates who can take the initiative and are not afraid to ask relevant questions that show they are committed to understanding all the job entails.

There is almost always a time when the employer gives you room to ask any questions you may have concerning the job and the organisation. Declining to ask questions can work against you as it might mean you do not care much about the job, have not done your homework or are not smart enough. Each of these do not paint a good picture for your candidature. On the other hand asking intelligent, probing questions that show your good understanding of the job and your eagerness to learn more about the company sends positive signals to the employers and shows you are not just there to occupy a seat and hope to get a job.

Not asking questions is certainly one of the negative signals you can send to an employer. However asking the wrong questions can effectively close your chances of getting considered for the job. The questions you ask and the manner with which you ask them matter a lot. Employers will be impressed with inquisitive questions that stimulate thoughts and shows you as passionate about the organisation, its activities and the job you are potentially seeking to do. Asking the right questions also show the employer you took the time to prepare for the interview and in many jobs it is a quality sought after; the ability to plan, prepare and execute on activities.

Ask questions that you find relevant but think through each question before asking and try to avoid too touchy or forward questions. Forthrightness and diplomacy should be your watchwords here.

There are certainly many questions you can ask in an interview and most are determined by the nature of the job, the organisation behind the job and questions you were asked by the employer/interviewer. We profile a list of 20 good questions to ask in a job interview. They are by no means a must in all interviews as your final list of questions to ask the employer will be determined by the factors we mentioned above.

– Are there any examples of the sort of projects I’ll be involved with in this position?
– What is the typical work week like for this position?
– How important is this position in the scheme of things in your organisation?
– What distinguishes this company from its competitors?
– Does the company offer continued education and professional training?
– How can I best contribute to the department if chosen?
– What particular achievements would equate to success at this job? What would success look like?
– What is the communications style with your staff and other team members?
– Do you have any concerns about me or about my qualifications that may prevent you from selecting me for the job?
– How would you describe the company’s culture and leadership philosophy?

Recruiters have also helped list some questions you should never ask your interviewer;

– Never ask many questions about the interviewer’s background.
– Never ask about pay, time off, benefits, etc. (Wait until later in the process to inquire about these things.)
– Never ask “If I’m hired, when can I start applying for other positions in the company?”
– Never ask “What does your company do? (You should have found that out already)
– Never ask how quickly you can be promoted.
– Never ask “Do you do background checks?”
– Never ask about gossip you’ve heard.
– Never ask if the company monitors e-mail or Internet usage.

and more.

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