Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Good and timely questions to ask during an interview

An interview is a two-way street. It is always tricky, especially at the end of a job interview, when the interviewer has asked all pre-determined questions and now turns to you and says "Is there anything you'd like to ask me?" The employers should always provide such an opportunity for a change of roles. That is why, always plan of some specific questions to ask. Having nothing prepared sends the message that you don’t have an independent thought process. There is no greater turn-off than a candidate who says "No. I think you've answered all my questions." This shows a lack of curiosity and employers are not looking for uncurious people.
Even though some of your question can be answered during the process of the interview, you can always state something to the effect that you were interested in knowing about, but that has already been addressed during the interview. Also, you can ask for additional clarification if the situation allows you to.
Another great turn-off for the interviewers are untimely questions related to benefits and salary issues as those should be brought up only by the employer. Prioritization of the remuneration package speaks badly about the candidate.
Here are several ideas of interesting questions to ask. However, make sure that you are really concerned about this information as the opposite will be obvious to the employer.

 Can you describe an ideal employee?
 What kind of work can I expect to be doing the first year?
 What are some of the skills and abilities necessary for someone to succeed in this job?
 Who will review my performance? How often?
 Could you describe your company's management style and the type of employee who fits well with it?
 How much opportunity will I have for decision-making in my first assignment?

As for the employers, what you need to remember is that looking for a job is like shopping for shoes – you are looking for the pair that will best fit you, not the one that first catches your eye. This is where good and timely questions can help you sift the pool of “appealing” candidates.

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