What Questions to Expect and What to Avoid Asking in an Interview

The question usually comes near the end of an interview. And, it’s about as predictable as the sun rising in the east. The interviewer asks “So, do you have any questions for me?”


If you are the one receiving that question, preparation is critical.

Being prepared with strategic questions will help you in two ways; it will demonstrate that you are serious about the job but also help you determine if the job is right for YOU. After all, any interview is a two-way street. Both the hiring manager and you (the candidate) use this time to determine whether this is a good fit. Certainly, asking the right questions during the interview sends a strong message. To quote career expert Alexandra Levit – “Asking intelligent questions leaves the interviewer with a powerful impression of your value.”

At Key Corporate Services, our recruiting specialists have a close, ongoing working relationship with our corporate clients. We nurture a clear understanding of what constitutes a good match between client and candidate. Then, we locate that person possessing the exceptional skills and experiences that make for a great match to our client’s needs. We educate the candidate thoroughly on the company and the position. They will go into the interview knowledgeable and ready to represent themselves in the most favorable light. It is all part of helping the candidate prepare for that moment when they are asked: “So, do you have any questions for me?”

So, what are some great questions to ask and what questions should you avoid?

Some great questions include the following:

• How would you describe the company’s culture and leadership philosophy?
• Can you tell me about the types of projects that I would work on?
• What is the single largest problem facing your staff, and would I be in a position to help you resolve this issue?
• What particular qualities and skills are you looking for in the job candidate?
• What is the typical career path for someone in this position?
• How can I best contribute to the department?

Questions to avoid asking include:

• Who is your competition? (You should already know this from your research)

• How soon do you promote employees?

• Never ask questions about salary, time off, benefits, etc. Those inquiries would come after your employer makes an offer.
• Do you conduct background checks or monitor social media profiles, email, or Internet usage?

In summary, candidates should prepare to ask strategic questions during an interview. Hiring managers appreciate engaged conversation and value an inquisitive mind. Look at it as a perfect opportunity to impress while you learn whether the company is a great fit!

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