Typically, people just go to interviews with the idea that they’re going to answer questions, and leave with the hope of getting a job at the end of the day. But interviews are not about the interviewers only, they’re also an avenue for you to ask some important questions about the role and organisation you’re applying to join.
Here are some really valid and important questions to always ask at an interview.
WHAT ARE YOUR SHORT AND LONG-TERM GOALS FOR THE POSITION?
Employers will probably ask about your career goals, but you should ask them what they want the person in this position to achieve. Are they concerned with increasing revenue, visibility, leads, improving morale or any number of other things? You want to know that they have a purpose for this position and aren’t just looking for a temporary solution.
CAN YOU TELL ME WHY THE LAST PERSON LEFT THIS JOB?
They might not tell you, but it doesn’t hurt to ask. If the person got promoted or took a better job elsewhere, that’s a sign that the position is a good way to advance a career.
WHO ARE THE PEOPLE I’LL BE WORKING WITH ON A DAILY BASIS?
Where does this role fit in the overall structure of the team and the business? Will you interact with people who can help your career? Will you spend most of your days in silence, typing on a computer? All that matters is that you receive an answer that appeals to you.
WHAT DO YOU THINK IS THE BIGGEST CHALLENGE FOR A PERSON TAKING UP THIS ROLE?
No position is perfect. In fact, some jobs are created to address a problem that needs to be solved. That could very well be what attracted you to the job. An honest employer will tell you what struggles lie ahead. That’s your opportunity to turn the answer around as a challenge you’re happy to accept and present some ideas of how you would tackle the obstacles. If the employer makes it sound too good to be true, it probably is.
DO YOU HAVE ANY RECOMMENDATIONS ON HOW I COULD IMPROVE MY INTERVIEWING SKILLS?
Most job seekers forget to ask this. It helps you work on your failures so that you are ready for another interview. If you don’t get the position, you’ll be disappointed, but use it as an opportunity to improve your interviewing skills. Some employers won’t give you tips, but others might give you feedback that will help you on the next interview.