One of the best tips for nailing a job interview is not to stay silent at the end when the interviewer asks if you have any questions. Having several in your mind shows that you’ve done your research on the company, you are curious and willing, and that you’re ready to jump right in and start contributing right away. If you don’t ask, the interviewer might be less inclined to hire you–or might forget about you altogether. Here are some tips and tricks to help you know which questions you should ask at the end of your next interview.
“How has this position evolved since it began?”
This is a smart question to ask because you’ll get a sense of how the company operates. Getting some history on the role will also indicate if it’s a dead role, unlikely to expand or adapt. If the role has not changed much since it was developed, that’s a good indication that the company may be in poor health or that the job offers no mobility.
“How do employees in this position succeed?”
Knowing how success is measured will help you understand more of the role’s nuances and whether you are a good fit for it. And it’s always good to know exactly what will be expected of you in your new position.
“Do you have any questions about my skills or qualifications?”
This question certainly demonstrates confidence. Asking it does not mean that you should aggressively defend every point the prospective employer might make about your resume, but it can give you an opportunity to speak up on a topic you haven’t covered yet. It will show that you’re confident in your skills and experience, but address specific concerns—this is not the time to toot your own horn so loudly, as it were.
“What do you like about working here?”
If the interviewer is able to provide lots of examples about why they like the company, that’s a good sign. Once they’ve listed off the things they value at their jobs, you will know better if your values match the company’s and if you’re likely to be happy there. But if the interviewer struggles to come up with anything good, that’s a sign that they don’t much like working there—and neither will you.
“What is the next step in the process?”
It’s essential that you end the interview with this question, or one very like it. “When will you know?” is not a great question to ask because it demonstrates that you’re only interested in their final decision (which may be true), while this version of the question shows that you’re interested in the process and in moving forward. You may also learn how many other people are being interviewed for the position.
Don’t worry about that job interview; just stay calm, smile, and ask questions!