U.S. News and World report article, The 10 Best Questions to Ask at a Job Interview, Karen Burns gives readers sample questions they should ask during the interview process.
Below is an excerpt from Burns’ article. Click here to read full article.
You’re interviewing for a job. After 20 or 30 minutes, you’re asked: “Do you have any questions?”
The worst thing you can do is ask, “What is it your company does?” (Hey, it has happened.) The next worst thing you can do is say, “Um, nope, I don’t have any questions.”
You need to ask some questions! Asking questions shows your interest in a company and makes you look smarter (smart people tend to be inquisitive). Asking questions gives interviewers a chance to talk about themselves, a thing most people love. And—this is important—asking questions is a way to find out if you really want to work for these people.
Bottom line: Don’t make the interviewer do all the heavy lifting. Take an active role in the interview process and improve your chances of landing a job.
So what should you ask? Here are 10 suggestions:
1. “Can you describe a typical day for someone in this position?” If your interviewer appears to be nervous or ill at ease, a non-abstract question like this is a good way to get the ball rolling.
2. “Could you talk about the history of this position?” Specifically, what you’re trying to find out is how long the position has existed, how many people have held it, and why it is now available.
3. “What were the major strengths and weaknesses of the last person who held this job?” Or in other words, what kind of act would you have to follow. This is also a chance to find out what happened to your would-be predecessor. How this question is answered will tell you a lot about the dynamics and expectations of this workplace.
4. “What are this position’s biggest challenges?” You’re naturally curious about the downsides of the job. But find out in a way that makes you look confident and unafraid to tackle problems.
5. “In what area could your team use some improvement?” Do you get an honest-sounding answer? This is important. It’s also an opportunity to talk some more about how your skills specifically match this company’s needs.
6. “What are the prospects for advancement?” Asking this demonstrates that you have ambition, and makes you look like a big picture person.