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Questions to Ask Before Leaving an Interview

by Denise Sullivan

At the end of a job interview, you are usually given a few minutes to ask your own questions. Prepare ahead of time so you can take advantage of the opportunity. This helps you stand out from the other candidates and gives you valuable information about the job. You want to show the interviewer that you are invested in the company and its success, not just putting in time to collect a paycheck. However, some questions are inappropriate for the interview setting, such as asking whether you got the job or asking about salary.

Company Goals

Ask how your job helps the company achieve its goals. Be sure to mention both short-term and long-term goals to show you intend to stay at the company for awhile instead of using the job as a stepping stone to further your career. The response to this question gives you information about the company's expectations of you so you can customize your answers for the rest of the interview and lets you know where your job fits in with the company's plan.

Challenges

Inquire about the challenges that other new hires in the same position have faced. This shows maturity, especially if you are just out of college and do not have much work experience. Most young employees would not consider the possibility of failure when beginning the job. This question can also help you succeed if you do get the job because you know what problems to avoid. The answers you receive may tip you off to major problems within the company.

Workplace Morale

Ask the interviewer what he likes about going to work each day. This helps you find common ground with the interviewer and shows your interest in learning about others in the company. The answers you receive will give you an idea of the workplace culture so you can decide if you want to take the job if it is offered to you. You can also rephrase the question to ask about his favorite thing about the company or why he has remained employed there.

Doubts and Reservations

Use your final question to resolve any remaining doubts the interviewer may have about your ability to handle the job. You only have one chance to impress the hiring manager, so you do not want to leave the interview without addressing all of his concerns. This is especially important if the issues are due to a simple miscommunication. Even if you do not get the job, the answer to this question can show you the weak spots in your interview technique so you can improve in the future.

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