Hiring & Recruiting

Job Search & Career Advice

Questions to Avoid During an Interview

“Do you have any questions for us?” can sometimes be a game changer when it comes to a job interview. Not only does the interviewer want to gauge if you’ve been engaged during the conversation, but they also want to know if you are interested in the company. Asking the right questions can pique the interviewer’s interest as well as give you the opportunity to ask questions that will help you understand if you are the right fit for the company. While this is a welcome opportunity for both you and the person interviewing you, be aware that there are some questions you will want to avoid. 

First off, don’t say “no” when asked if you have any questions. You need to show your interest, and this is a great way to get your questions answered or show that you have done some research on the company. When given the opportunity, you need to be prepared and ready to ask the right questions. 

9 Questions to Avoid During an Interview 

Here are nine questions you don’t want to ask your interviewer. (And we’re throwing in the top 4 questions you must ask) 

Don’t ask…

1. What does the company do? 

Yikes! If you need to ask this one, then you haven’t done your homework. Interviewers like to know that their candidates have done the research and are applying to jobs that they are truly interested in. Not having any knowledge or background about the company leaves a bad impression and could make the interviewer question your ability to do the job.

2. What does this job entail? 

Again, you need to look over the job description before you enter your interview. The interviewer wants to see that you are truly interested in the role you are applying for. Instead, ask about what the position’s day-to-day responsibilities look like to get more details not already listed in the application.

3. Are there other jobs open? 

You are there to interview for the position you applied for. Asking about other opportunities will make it seem like you are not serious about this role. Asking about growth opportunities is a good question, but your focus needs to be on the role you applied for in the first place.

4. Questions related to personal lives 

It’s unprofessional to ask your interviewer about their personal life or anything else unrelated to the company or position. However, you can ask your interviewer about his or her experience at the company and why they like working there.

5. When can I take time off? 

If you haven’t even received an offer, it’s not a good idea to jump straight into asking about taking time off. This doesn’t leave a good impression – not only does it make it seem that you are expecting to get a job offer, but you might not be interested in the role either. Wait until you receive your offer letter and benefits package, and then negotiate if needed. 

6. Do you like your boss? 

Any questions about personal judgments or opinions should be avoided. You can instead ask about the culture or what challenges arise in the work environment. You want to keep the tone positive, so they know you are focused on the positive aspects of this opportunity. 

7. What do you not like about working here?

Similar to the question above, you don’t want to ask any negative questions. This can affect how your interviewer perceives you. Prepare questions that are more positive and ones that give you a deeper understanding of the business, such as what coworkers love about working at the company. 

8. How often do you promote employees? 

You want to wait until you receive a job offer for this one as well. Instead, you may choose to ask about how the company measures success and recognizes its coworkers. 

9. Will I have long hours? 

You don’t want to seem lazy with your interviewer! Asking this question could make it seem like you are not ready to put in the time, even before you get hired. Every job and industry has its challenges, busy times and required work hours.  

4 Questions You Must Ask Your Employer During an Interview 

If you’re looking to prepare some thoughtful questions for the interviewer, we have the top key questions to ask. 

1. Can you please tell me about the company culture and values? 

Asking your interviewer to talk to you about culture is important for you to see if you’re the right fit and if you will enjoy working there. Hearing examples will give you more insight as you make your decision. 

2. How do you recognize your employees? 

With this question, you will be able to gauge how the employer treats their employees and make sure their incentives and programs are appealing to you. 

3. What do you love about working here? 

This answer can help you further along your decision for continuing the process or looking elsewhere. If the interviewer answers enthusiastically, it’s a good sign that they truly do love their role. 

4. What are the next steps? 

If they haven’t already told you what the next steps are, this is a good way for you to learn about what will come next, what additional testing or interviewing will be required, and what their time frame is for completing the hiring process. 

We hope this helps you prepare for your next interview. Good luck!  

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