- Mary Caldwell For the AJC
When you're preparing for that all-important job interview, you probably spend a fair amount of time wondering what questions you might be asked and how you should respond. But it's just as important to consider the end of the interview when you're asked, "Do you have any questions?"
You should always have a few questions prepared to ask – and they shouldn't be of the "How much time off would I get?" variety.
Instead, take the opportunity to further demonstrate your qualifications while learning more about whether the company and position would be a good fit for you.
The following are five smart questions to ask at the end of your next interview:
What type of employee tends to succeed here, and what qualities are most important for doing well and advancing at the firm?
This question shows you're invested in your potential future with the company and gives you the opportunity to expand on any of your skills or work history that fits in well with your interviewer's answer. According to Business Insider, also helps you decide whether the company and position are right for you, since this is just as important as the interviewer deciding whether you're right for the company.
Do you have any hesitations about my qualifications?
Although it may seem like a subject you want to avoid, this question lets the interviewer know that you're confident enough to discuss any vulnerabilities and that you're willing to be coached, which is an important quality for a prospective employee to have. U.S. News & World Report reports it also gives you the chance to address, without sounding defensive, any shortcomings your interviewer thinks you have.
Who previously held this position?
Forbes editors suggest this question will let you know if the person was fired, promoted or left for another reason. If he or she was promoted, you may be learning about a possible career trajectory and the potential for advancement. If not, listen for possible signs of employee discontent that may be revealed if an employee left the company entirely or made a lateral move. You also may be able to gauge whether the company has employees around your age. For example, did the person who previously held this position retire or quit to spend more time with their young kids?
What are the company's highest priority goals this year, and how would my role contribute?
The answer to this question will help you learn if your job has an important purpose that clearly fits into the company's goals, according to Inc. A job that matters and directly ties into a company's mission can make your work feel worthwhile while making it less likely that your position will be eliminated if there's a round of budget cuts.
If you were to hire me, what might I expect in a typical day?
Not only does this question show more interest in the position, but according to Business Insider, it also gives you very specific information about expectations and responsibilities. Finding out what a typical day might be like will help you decide whether it's a job that fits well with your skills and career goals or one that would leave you dreading the workday.