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Job Interview: Smart Questions to ask

by Miriam Ernst
Job interview, be-professional, interview questions, tips
Job interview, be-professional, interview questions, tips
Job interview, be-professional, interview questions, tips

Smart questions to ask during a Job Interview

Who doesn’t hate the last moment of a job interview when the interviewer asks you if you had any further questions? Well I do!

I always feel like I am obligated to ask something, also if I have already asked everything that was relevant for me.

So is it really necessary to ask an additional question or die? – Well, if you haven’t had the one-in-a-million type of job interview, where you totally get along with the interviewer and have asked questions to each other during the full time, then yes, I would say: ‘Yes, it is!’

I think this one-in-a-kind interview is the only time you can get away with a ‘I think the interview was very clear and we have discussed every topic that was important for me at this state’. For any other type of interview, which you will probably have, you’ll have to have a question on hand – and not just any question, but an intelligent one!

So what exactly is an intelligent question? Well this depends from job to job and interviewer to interviewer, however it definitely should not be a question that you could have looked up in 30 seconds using google! We want to show them, that we already know how to do research, don’t we?

Rules for intelligent questions

  • Show that you have done some research! Ask questions that go back to some article about the company that you have read. For example if the company has just shortly changed the Leading Manager, ask if there will be any changes in the near future regarding the company structure.
  • Also if every one knows that this is a big and important part of why you choose a company, don’t ask questions regarding salary, raises, promotions, vacations or any other type of benefits. This could show a lack of interest in the company itself. However if the company has already started talking about this then you can feel free to continue with these questions.
  • Ask questions, that are relevant for the job you are applying to, the working conditions, the type of work, the working space etc.
  • Always keep in mind, that you want to show your interest in the position, find out if the company is a good fit for you and see if the employer has reservations about you

The top list of Smart Questions

Smart questions – to get to know the company better

  • Could you tell me something about the team that I would be working with?’ – This is a great question to understand better what you are exactly applying for. How many people will be in your team and how the working environment is.
  • ‘What have you enjoyed most working here?’ This is a positive question and is there for alright to ask. It will help you understand the working climate.
  • ‘How is success determined in this position?’ A great question if you are eager to grow. Many companies tend to offer employee gift cards to motivate their employees. Asking this question shows the employer that you are looking to be successful and will show you if the way of working is what you are looking for.
  • ‘Who was the person working before in this position?’ An excellent question if you’d like to know more about the company, what type of person was working there and why the person is not in the position anymore.
  • ‘What are the responsibilities in the position?’ A very important question, which will show you the exact level of the job, the day-to-day work and will make it clear if you can se yourself in this role, while showing exact interest in the position.
  • ‘What kind of software or tools will I be working with?’ You can never be too prepared for an interview or the job you are hired to do. Having enough knowledge about the company can help your first day at work go great. For instance, if you are in a management position, should you use okr tracking software or a similar workflow/tracking software? It is better to have an idea of what these tools are and how they work in a corporate environment.
  • ‘Who would I be reporting to?’ Sometimes you’re having a job interview only with the HR and Leading Manager, without talking to your direct boss at all. It could be important to ask to meet the person before accepting a job, just that you know who you’ll be working with.
  • ‘What does for you personally make this place a great working environment?’ A great way to become more personal with the interviewer and to understand how the company ticks. You could also ask them about employee benefits to see how the company cares for the well-being of its employees.

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Smart questions – to sell yourself

  • ‘Is the team having any actual challenges in achieving any goals?’ This is the perfect question to sell yourself. If you are able to give any great feedback on how you could help the company improve and work on these challenges you’ll probably get the job.
  • ‘Is there any target that you are having difficulties in reaching and why?’ This is another excellent question to sell yourself. If there is any group they have difficulties in reaching, maybe you can help with your knowledge and experience. This is your chance to get that job.

Smart questions – to help you talk about the right experiences

  • ‘What skills and experiences would make an ideal candidate?’ This question helps you to understand if the job is really what you are looking for and gives you the chance to add important experiences.
  • ‘Do you have any hesitation about my qualifications?’ Here you can show that you have no problems in talking about more complicated topics and you’ll get the chance to correct possible misunderstandings or to add relevant qualifications.
  • ‘Is there anything we haven’t yet talked about or something that I can do to help you with your decision?’ A great way of seeing a direct feedback from the interviewer. If there is anything he is especially interested in or is missing.

Smart questions – to show interest

  • ‘Are there any plans of growth or expansion of the company?’ A top question mostly because it shows that you are interested in the future of the company which often means, that you are not planning to leave the company after a short period.
  • Do you offer training programmes? This applies especially for bigger companies who may well have training in place, having first looked at something like a side by side comparison of LMS vs LXP systems to help them choose what to go for for their learning programmes. It shows that you have interest in growing with the company.
  • ‘What is the next step in the process?’ A question that should definitely be asked at the end of the job interview, if it has not already been stabilised before.
  • ‘What type of employee tends to succeed in the company?’ or ‘What qualities are the most important for doing well and advancing at the firm?’ This is another excellent question which will help you to picture yourself in this role and gives you the opportunity to add something important.
  • ‘Where is the company aiming to go within the next 5 years?’ A simple question to see if there is room for improvement and growth in the company and at the same time a great way to show that you are looking for a more permanent position.

Do you have any other great questions to ask during a Job Interview? Or did my questions help you? Please let me know in the comments below!

Here you can find all tips on what to avoid during a Job Interview!

Best, Be-Sparkling!

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