Faced with preparing for a job interview, you may get a new outfit, read up on the company, and review common interview questions so you’ll be ready to talk about your strengths and accomplishments. However, interviews aren’t just for the interviewer to get to know you, they’re also a chance for you to get to know more about the company you’re applying to and whether it’s a place you really want to work. Take the time to prepare a list of thoughtful questions before your interview. Not only does this help you learn more about the company and the role you’re applying for it can show the interviewer you’re serious about the position.
Here are some questions you might consider bringing to your interview:
1. What will a typical workday look like?
Often during an interview you’ll get a broad sense of what you’ll do in a position, but this question will help give you the nitty gritty details. It might turn out the position isn’t what you had envisioned, or maybe it’s even more appealing than you previously thought.
2. What are the biggest challenges of this position?
This question will help you be prepared for those challenges if you do get the job and accept it. You’ll have a chance to think about how you can navigate these obstacles before you even start working.
3. What kind of opportunities for growth are there? What have employees in this position moved on to do in the past?
Technically this is two questions, but they can go together. Asking about room for growth can give you an idea of where you might go eventually, and whether that aligns with your career goals. If you’re interviewing for internship, this question will give you a clear idea of whether or not the company regularly hires their interns for full-time positions.
4. How would you describe the company culture?
Although this question is often asked at interviews for full-time jobs, even as a temporary employee or intern you will be spending a large portion of your time at this job. It will be beneficial to know what the work-life balance is like, how formal people dress or act, if people bring their dogs to work, etc. Finding out more about the company culture will let you know what to expect at the office, and also how you should act accordingly.
5. What is your favorite part about coming to work every day?
This question gets your interviewer thinking about their own personal experience at the company, and can give you some real insight into what the employees like about their jobs, and what working there might be like for you.
6. What are the next steps?
This is a great question to end on, because it allows a segue way for the interviewer to explain how the hiring process will go from this point. They might tell you that you will hear back within the next few days, or they might say that they’re interviewing other candidates and you should hear back in a month or two. Either way, it will let you know what to expect from them moving forward.
7. Do you have a business card?
Get in the habit of asking every person that interviews you for a business card, and then send them a thank-you letter or email the next day. While this step isn’t necessary, it never hurts to take the time to thank your interviewers, and can sometimes make you stand out from the competition.
While it is important to ask your interviewer questions make sure you’re also respectful of their time and avoid going overboard with your questions. Choose two to three that are most important to you. Now go on and ace that interview! We believe in you!