Do you have any questions for us? Anyone who has ever interviewed for a job has most likely been asked this question. The reason interviewers like to ask this question is not only because they might want to be courteous toward you by clearing your doubts. No, the real reason why most interviewers offer to answer your questions is because they want to hear what kind of questions you have.
Only asking questions about the compensation and benefits, is a big red flag to most interviewers. On the other hand, if you ask questions that you easily could have Googled beforehand, that shows that you didn’t put any effort into preparing the interview. “No” is also not the right answer to this question as it might indicate a lack of interest and motivation toward the opportunity.
So what should you ask, then? Since “do you have any questions for us?” is a way for your interviewer to evaluate your motivation toward the company and the job you are interviewing for, obviously you should ask questions that show your sincere interest in the opportunity. You might ask about the future direction of the company, expectations for the person in the role you are applying for, or ask for more information on an article that you read about the company before the interview.
You also want to keep in mind that this question is an opportunity for you to evaluate if the company and the job are the right fit for you. Here are 3 questions you can ask in your next job interview to find out if the job really is for you.
1. What kind of opportunities for growth there are in this role?
This question can help you evaluate whether this job is going to get you closer to your long-term career goals. However, asking about professional growth opportunities also gives you insight into the company culture and whether or not they invest in their employee’s career development. If your interviewer can tell you about training opportunities and possible career paths within the company, that indicates that the company wants their people to stay with them for a long time and to grow with the company. The lack of a professional path inside the company doesn’t necessarily mean that the opportunity is not the right one for you. If you can still learn new skills in the role and you and your manager are on the same page about the expectations, it might still be a good fit. However, if you are looking for a career in a company that truly invests in their people, growth opportunities are a strong indication of such a culture.
2. How do you like to manage your team?
While the saying “people leave managers, not jobs” is being repeated so much that it has almost become a cliché, it still holds true. A good manager can make an okay job feel great, a bad manager can make your dream job become a nightmare. Therefore, when you are interviewing with your possible new boss, ask them about their management style and evaluate whether that fits you or not. For example, if you are someone who likes to work independently and to only consult with your manager when you are in doubt, a management style where every decision needs to be approved by your superior will most likely not be the right one for you or make you happy. Pay also attention to how the manager responds to your question. No one will tell you directly that they micromanage their employees so hesitation, pauses, or very general answers might be indications that the manager is reluctant to answer your question.
3. For you, what is the best part about working for this company?
This question helps you get insight into the company culture and if the current employees are happy or not. Answers such as “they pay my paycheck on time“, are obviously big warning signs. However, try also evaluate not only what your interviewer responds but also how they respond. When people are in a great company culture, they usually are noticeably excited to answer the question and find it hard to limit themselves to only one best thing. However, when they have to pause to think about the answer or they seem uncomfortable and give you a short, vague answer, it might be a red flag.
Do you have any other tips on what to ask in a job interview? Share them in the comments. 🙂