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Five of the best questions to ask in an interview

June 21st, 2019 by

Of all the common interview questions, there’s one that you’re likely to be asked no matter what job you’re applying for – and that’s “Any questions?”

You know it’s coming up at the end of your interview and it’s your last chance to leave the room with a good impression, so make it count.

Here are five of the best questions to ask in an interview, to show insight and enthusiasm, without coming across as if you think you’re the interviewer.

 

1. How does the role develop in the first year?

Show a long-term approach and a willingness to adapt to the changing nature of your role at one month, six months and a year.

It’s inevitable that your job will change in some ways as you complete your initial training, and it’s good to show enthusiasm for this part of the process.

This is also a good open-ended question so the interviewer will have to give you a full and engaged answer, and not a simple ‘yes’ or ‘no’.

 

2. What is the company culture like?

If it’s not already obvious from the company’s public persona or your time spent there during your interview day, this is another good, open and engaged question to ask.

You’ll also gain valuable insight into the kind of atmosphere you’ll be working in – which might even affect your own decision whether to take the job or not!

 

3. What is your own experience of working for the company?

Pay some personal attention to your interviewer and build some last-minute rapport by asking them about their own thoughts on the company they work for.

It’s best not to push this one – not all interviewers will feel comfortable having the tables turned on them – but it shows again that you are interested in the long-term company culture and potentially rising through the ranks to conduct interviews yourself in the future.

 

4. What are the company’s opportunities/challenges right now?

Gauge the current outlook for the company – are they working to overcome significant hurdles right now, or is everything looking rosy?

By asking this, you can also show a willingness to hit the ground running and join in your new team’s efforts to reach a common goal.

You might even have past experience of overcoming similar challenges in other jobs – and this could help to make you seem even more indispensable if your potential new employer is finding it hard to make progress.

 

5. Do you have everything you need from me?

You have an opportunity to tie up loose ends before you walk out, so it’s worth double checking that the interviewers are satisfied that they have everything they need.

For example, if you were asked to provide a CV, cover letter and references, make sure all of these were received and offer to follow up on providing further references if needed.

Depending on the role, you might also offer to provide proof of professional qualifications, as well as any other useful certificates – such as First Aid or Fire Safety – that you don’t think were mentioned enough in the interview.

 

Take a look at some other useful tricks, hints and tips to make sure you are prepared for anything, it never hurt to be too prepared!

12 Days of Job Hunting

January 4th, 2017 by

On the eleventh day of job hunting my recruiter said to me…

Be prepared for tests

Be polite to everyone

What are your career goals?

Show enthusiasm

What’s your biggest achievement?

Know your strengths and weaknesses

Spring clean your social media

Give goOOOod examples

Research the company in detail

A suit or smart clothing to make the best first impression

A map to plan my journey

And a clear up to date CV

 

More and more interviews will contain tests, whether it is a test to assess computer skills, spelling or grammar, typing speed or prioritising skills, whatever the reason, don’t be put off when asked to do it.  Your reaction to being asked, the way you handle pressure and your results may all be used in order to determine your suitability for the position.

12 Days of Job Hunting

January 3rd, 2017 by

On the tenth day of job hunting my recruiter said to me….

Be polite to everyone

Show enthusiasm

What’s your biggest achievement?

Know your strengths and weaknesses

Spring clean your social media

Give goOOOod examples

Research the company in detail

A suit or smart clothing to make the best first impression

A map to plan my journey

And a clear up to date CV

 

It is always important to be polite to everyone you meet when attending an interview.  You never know, the person sitting at reception, could be the MD about to interview you!

12 Days of Job Hunting

January 2nd, 2017 by

On the ninth day of job hunting my recruiter said to me…

What are your career goals?

Show enthusiasm

What’s your biggest achievement?

Know your strengths and weaknesses

Spring clean your social media

Give goOOOod examples

Research the company in detail

A suit or smart clothing to make the best first impression

A map to plan my journey

And a clear up to date CV

 

They are checking if you are likely to stay and if so, for how long. Reassure the employer that the role you are applying for fits your career plan and your longer term commitment to the company.

12 Days of Job Hunting

January 1st, 2017 by

On the eighth day of job hunting my recruiter said to me….

What’s your biggest achievement?

Know your strengths and weaknesses

Spring clean your social media

Give goOOOod examples

Research the company in detail

A suit or smart clothing to make the best first impression

A map to plan my journey

And a clear up to date CV

 

Choose work-related examples that show a tangible benefit to the business. Personal achievements should only be included if they are very impressive or prestigious.

12 Days of Job Hunting

December 31st, 2016 by

On the Seventh day of job hunting my recruiter said to me…

Know your strengths and weaknesses

Spring clean your social media

Give goOOOod examples

Research the company in detail

A suit or smart clothing to make the best first impression

A map to plan my journey

And a clear up to date CV

 

Focus on what you know they are looking for, even if it has been a smaller part of what you have been doing to date. The job advert or person specification form will give you the information you need about their requirements. Focus on what you know they are looking for, even if it has been a smaller part of what you have been doing to date.

12 Days of Job Hunting

December 30th, 2016 by

On the Sixth day of job hunting my recruiter said to me….

Spring clean your social media

Give goOOOod examples

Research the company in detail

A suit or smart clothing to make the best first impression

A map to plan my journey

And a clear up to date CV

 

More and more employers are looking at social media when deciding on a candidate.  Make sure you don’t have anything out there that could show you in a negative light to an employer.  Never speak negatively about a current or past employer on social media as it will reflect badly on you.  And remember, if you don’t want your boss to know, don’t put it out there!

12 Days of Job Hunting

December 29th, 2016 by

On the fifth day of job hunting my recruiter said to me….

Give goOOOod examples

Research the company in detail

A suit or smart clothing to make the best first impression

A map to plan my journey

And a clear up to date CV

 

For each quality you present, make sure you’re prepared to describe a situation where you demonstrated that quality. Basically, you always want to be able to back up any claims you might make. For example, if during the interview you say that you work well under pressure, be ready to describe an example where you did work effectively under pressure and delivered the results required.

12 Days of job Hunting

December 28th, 2016 by

On the fourth day of job hunting my recruiter said to me…

Research the company in detail

A suit or smart clothing to make the best first impression

A map to plan my journey

And a clear up to date CV

 

Do your homework before the interview! Spend some time online or at the library researching the company. Find out as much as you can, including products, size, income, reputation, image, management talent, people, skills, history and philosophy. Project an informed interest; let the interviewer tell you about the company.

12 Days of Job Hunting

December 27th, 2016 by

On the third day of job hunting my recruiter said to me…

A suit or smart clothing to make the best first impression…

A map to plan my journey

And a clear up to date CV

 

An interview is not the place to make a fashion statement and more and more companies are returning to traditional professional dress. Whatever you wear should indicate that you’re a professional who’s ready to get to work at a new job.