Do you dread the ‘Is there anything you’d like to ask us?’ question?

First published Tuesday, April 29, 2014

Interviews nearly always come to a close with a variation on the ‘is there anything you’d like to ask’ line. It’s one of those moments where all the things you’d previously considered asking vanish out of your head whilst your face desperately tries not to give away the fact that you’ve just hit the “panic” button. You know that it’s a good idea to have something to ask, but equally you don’t want to ask something that appears stupid or downright silly.

There are two ways to approach this. Spending more than 5 minutes researching your potential employer, whether by browsing their website, reading through relevant publications, maybe even checking out LinkedIn profiles of their staff or the company, can provide something to inspire a couple of questions to do with the business.

A handy post spotted on Pinterest prompted some other suggestions too. Whilst again some of them may not be appropriate depending on the position you’re applying for, here’s 7 handy ‘go to’ questions that can help you out:

  •  Can you describe a typical day in this type of role?
  • How long have you been at the company, and what makes you stay?
  • How would you describe the work environment and corporate culture?
  • What are some of the goals for the company in the short and longer term?
  • How would my performance be measured?
  • What types of career opportunities may open up down the road for a person starting out in this type of position assuming they perform well?
  • What are some of the company’s initiatives regarding learning and development?

You may of course wish to rephrase some of the questions to suit your own style better, or they may need to be adapted to suit the nature of the position you are applying for.  If you wish to jot a couple down on a small card as a reminder, that’s ok, but at least make sure it is neat, is easy to find when you need it and doesn’t look like it’s been through the wash a couple of times.

There is a saying about the five ‘P’s’ (the polite version being Prior Preparation Prevents Poor Performance) and it does work. It will help give you a focus prior to interview and it will also help you present yourself in the best possible light during interview.

First posted on The Recruiter Group Blog

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