Interviews can be nerve racking. You want to present the best version of yourself, and showcase your best qualities to the interviewer. However, a crucial portion of every interview is the opportunity for the interviewee to ask the interviewer questions. Here are some questions you can ask to show how professional and prepared you are, that will undoubtedly make you stand out as a candidate for the position.
What does your ideal candidate look like for this position?
This is a great question that can help you out in a few ways. First, this lets you know from the interviewers perspective what their top priorities are based on the first few characteristics/skills they list, and can give you a clue as to whether you would fit the position description. Secondly, this is a chance for you to reiterate or highlight any skills and qualities they mentioned that you feel you posses, when you give your final ‘pitch’ of why they should hire you.
What do you enjoy most about working at your company?
This question is very important and shows that you don’t just want to talk about yourself during an interview. It’s important to acknowledge that your interviewer most likely wants to talk about themselves as well, and share why they are so passionate about the company. This could also potentially give you more information about some of the more exciting things that you have to look forward to based on what the interviewer says.
What is the structure of the team/department I’ll be working with?
Knowing how your interactions with co-workers will be structured is a crucial piece of information to figure out as soon as possible. If you are an extremely social person who thrives on interpersonal interactions throughout the day, and the interviewer tells you that you will be working solely on your own with virtually no interaction with employees, you may want to rethink this position.
Where would you expect me to be after a month, six months, and a year into this position?
This is the million-dollar question. By asking the interviewer this, you are showing the interviewer that you’re interested in this position for the long haul, not just an opportunity to get your foot in the door until something better comes along. You’re also proving to your interviewer that meeting company goals and expectations is something that you’re invested in. Employers want to know that the people they’re hiring are going to take pride in their position and accomplish things. Ask this, and your interviewer will remember you for sure.
What are the next steps here?
It’s always important to ask what the next step in the interview process is, so that you don’t leave without an idea of when to expect to hear from the company again. This also keeps the company accountable, and gives you a timeframe to know when it would be appropriate to contact someone if you haven’t heard from them (which won’t happen, because you’re fantastic, how could they forget about you?!).
Written by: Molly Hoogland, Student Blogger