March 10, 2022
If you’re looking for good questions to ask at the end of an interview, it’s likely because you really want the job. At Goodwill Industries of Monocacy Valley, we can tell you that the questions you ask mean a lot to employers. They show that you’ve done your homework and that you’re thinking long-term about how you’ll fit in at the company. We’ll look at the theory behind these top suggestions, which ones you should have on your list and why they matter.
No matter what you ask, there should be a two-pronged approach to every question on your list. Yes, you want to help yourself stand out from other candidates, but you also want to gather data that will help you determine whether you’re right for this job.
It’s not uncommon for candidates to build up positions into a dream-come-true, only to find that the culture and the demands of the company simply don’t match up with what the person is looking for. By contrast, satisfactory answers to these questions can make you that much more confident in the decisions you’re making, which can be the key to long-term success.
This is a confident question to ask, one that says that you’re tuned in to what the interviewer plans to do next. Most likely, they still have several other candidates they need to talk to, but the idea is to give them the option to address any potential misgivings that they may have about your resume. It’s something of a humbling question too, as you’re ready to discuss any weaknesses that may be holding you back.
You’re also learning more about the culture of the company. If the interviewer answers the question with little more than a shrug, you’re potentially getting a glimpse at how your questions will be answered in the future. On the other hand, if you get a solid response that’s thoughtful and references the previous discussion you just had, you might get a directive in there (e.g., read up on our processes, contact this person, etc.) that allows you to secure the job.
Most interviewers will state in an interview that there’s room for growth (if they don’t, it would be smart to ask about the opportunities behind the individual position too). However, it’s important to know that this isn’t a promise of any kind. Instead of asking about the position itself, try asking about the larger company instead.
When you’re phrasing this question, make sure to factor in anything that you’ve read about the business or anything that the interviewer had previously discussed. For instance, if the interviewer had mentioned that the company wanted to expand into new territories, you might ask for more details about the target demographics or the strategies to branch out.
This shows that you were paying attention to what was already said and that you’re interested in how you can be a part of the company’s growth. Similarly, you’re getting a sense of whether the enterprise has a solid plan of how to move forward, which can help you better predict whether you’re actually going to be able to advance in the position.
People who love their jobs are typically happy to talk about it. When you ask them what makes them want to clock in day in and day out, it’s an opportunity to see if your values match up with your colleagues. At Goodwill Industries of Monocacy Valley, we recommend giving this particular answer a good deal of thought.
For instance, if the interviewer says that they appreciate how supportive everyone is, this is very different than a love of working through challenge after challenge. One is a commentary on how people look out for one another while the latter says something about thinking fast on your feet. There are no ‘wrong’ answers here — it comes down to what you’re looking for from a job. If you don’t want new problems thrown at you on a daily basis (a prospect that’s extremely enticing to some employees), you might be better off looking elsewhere. As long as you have a solid idea of what you expect from your next job, you should get some perspective on whether the position can provide this.
You should already know the main components of your job well before you schedule an interview. This question drives more to the heart of how days are typically structured. This killer question is often more necessary than most applicants think.
It’s not unusual for people to think that they’ll be focusing more on one aspect of the position, only to find that the bulk of their time goes to an ancillary responsibility that they didn’t fully consider before joining. This is particularly true in small offices, where people are required to wear multiple hats. For instance, a bookkeeper that also doubles as an office manager might find that they spend more time manning the phones than they do balancing the numbers.
There are always going to be multiple ways to rise the ranks, but this question is the chance to learn more about what the company prioritizes. Being proactive in your career might mean anything from attending conferences and networking more to taking classes in a related field. For instance, if you were being hired as a retail associate, you might take a class on marketing to understand how to attract customers and tempt them into trying a new product.
The question is also a signal to the interviewer that you’re ready to go the distance for the company, which can help you gain the edge over the competition. An applicant who looks more qualified on paper may have little to no interest in staying with the company for very long — and that intention is not always easy to hide when they’re in an interview.
While all of these are good questions to ask at the end of an interview, it’s important to make them unique. Chances are that the interviewer either touched on something specific already or that you had already done your research into some of these topics. A top way to get hired is to prove that you’ve been on the ball the whole time.
When you’re fortunate enough to meet with the employer, you have the chance to make an impression that lasts.
Having a killer interview is all about practice. At Goodwill Industries of Monocacy Valley, we offer job training services that include interview skills development. More than just helping you squash your nerves, this is a chance to nail down communication techniques that last long after you’re hired. If you want to learn more about how to be smart about your job search, contact us today for more information about what we can do.