When you are interested in someone, you want to find out all about him/her! A job interview should be no different. It took me many many interviews to realize that interviews are not an interrogation; it’s nothing more than a mutual exchange of information. While it’s an occasion for your potential future employer to evaluate your fit for a position, don’t forget it’s also your chance to get to know if the company is a place where you can best utilize your talent, where you can make tangible contributions, and most importantly where you can thrive. If you understand this nature of an interview, it’s a snap in terms of what to ask.
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Here are four types of questions that guarantees to set you apart.
1. Questions About the Role:
Of course you always want to go into an interview prepared. Before you ask this type of questions, please be sure you’ve read the job description very, very carefully. As the interview evolves, you can deviate from the description in your mind, and ask specifically about the role and the reason why this role is created. For example:“What kind of support is expected from the role?” “What kind of problem is expected to be solved by the role?” “How would the performance of this role be measured?“
2. Questions About the Structure of the Organization:
Depending on the size of the organization, which you can research about before the interview, you can ask about the structure of the organization. The goal for this type of question is to find out the role’s relations with others. You could ask something like:“Who would this role work most closely with?” (If your interviewer comes from the HR department) If your interviewer is the direct boss, you could ask: “Which other departments do you work most closely with?”
Figuring this out is important. Maybe you are interested in financial services, and went to an interview on a position in the marketing department of a stock brokerage firm. By asking this question, you’ll find out that marketing functions independently from the trading floor, and may not be an appropriate fit for you.
3. Questions About Room for Growth:
Career growth is important to everyone, and people want to work with someone who care about career development. If you are interviewing for a full-time position, you can ask:“What kind of growth track is this role on?” Or if for an internship, ask: “Where did previous interns move onto do?”
4. Questions About the Culture:
Culture is oftentimes underestimated by an interviewee. But all in all, when candidates’ capabilities and skills are on par, most commonly an interviewer would consider: would I like to work with him/her? Ask them about the culture will quickly put you on the same page with your interviewer. You can ask your interviewers to give you an overview about their culture, or ask what cultural element distinguishes them from their competitors, or even ask them what on your resume makes them think that you are a good cultural fit.
Good questions can get you very far, however, do not simply ask a question just because you think you are supposed to.