Stand out at the job interview by asking relevant questions
The biggest mistake at job interviews is being too busy answering questions. It is when you ask good questions that you stand out positively. You show an interest, find out more about what is important in the job you are applying for and remain proactive. Below you find some advice relating to asking questions:
Don’t ask about something you don’t wonder about. It is easy to see through show-offs who “raise their hand” and ask about something they already know the answer to in order to impress or appear important.
Write down the questions in advance
Before the interview, decide which questions you want to ask, and write these down in your notebook. When you have the notebook in front of you during the interview, you will remember which questions to ask. If you think of other questions there and then, you can of course ask them too.
Always save one question for last
When the interview is coming to an end and the employer asks you if there is anything else you are wondering about, you must have a question in mind. If you answer that you have been told everything you need to know, the chat dies out and the energy becomes flat. A positive question on the other hand, will lift the energy.
Good questions – especially for you who are at the beginning of your career – naturally have to do with the position you are applying for. But show an interest also beyond this special field. If you ask any questions about the company and the future plan, or about what is important to the boss, you have already stood out positively from most others. Start with questions about the position, such as what it entails and what it takes to do the job well.
- What are the most important daily tasks in this job?
- What knowledge is important, and what does it take to do a good job?
- What personal qualities do you look for in a good candidate?
- What are your expectations for this position for the first 30 days, the first three months and for the first year?
Then you can ask about things beyond the position:
- Can you tell us a little about the culture in the company?
- Is a good working environment important to you?
- What can I do, if I am hired, to contribute to a good working environment?
- What is most important for the department that this position is part of? What are the goals for that department?
- In most companies and industries there is a lot of change, probably here too. What will be the biggest changes in the next three years, for the job, department, and company?
- Will the person that is hired work closely with other people or other departments? What is the key to a well-functioning cooperation with others?
- Are there development opportunities?
Smart questions that few people make use of
Most candidates don’t ask enough questions, and those who ask questions mostly wonder about things related to the position they are applying for. What will impress the most are relevant questions that few other candidates ask. It will surprise those who interview you in a positive way and make the dynamics between you better. Here are some such questions:
- What is your dream candidate like? What does this person think and do?
- Let’s say you hire a person, time passes, and things are going well. What has this person done to succeed in the job?
- What is important to the boss?
- How does the boss measure success?
- What do you like the most about working for this company?