10 Must-Ask Questions for Job Seekers

Susan Hall
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Right after finishing my post "Answering the 'Where Will You Be in Five Years?' Question," I opened my e-mail to find one from career coach Ford. R. Myers, author of "Get The Job You Want, Even When No One's Hiring."


In that "five years" article at Harvard Business Review, writer Amy Gallo made the point that having a well-thought-out and practiced answer will score you more points with the interviewer than what that answer actually is.


Myers, meanwhile, says the most important questions of the interview might be the ones you ask yourself. He listed 10 must-ask questions for any job candidate:


  1. Can you give me more detail about the position's responsibilities?
  2. Where do you see this position going in the next few years?
  3. How can I most quickly become a strong contributor within the organization?
  4. What are the most challenging aspects of the job for which I am being considered?
  5. How will my performance be evaluated, and at what frequency?
  6. What particular aspects about my background and experience interest you?
  7. What makes you think I will be successful in this job? What causes you concern about my candidacy?
  8. Now that we've had a chance to talk, how does my background measure up to the requirements of the job? To the other candidates?
  9. Where are you in the hiring process? What's our next step?
  10. If I don't hear from you within (time period), would it be OK to call you?


I wrote previously that it's a good idea to save a few questions for the end of the interview. Toni Bowers at TechRepublic suggests these:

  • What do you like about working here? That gives you insight into the interviewer as well as the company.
  • What skills do I need to have most to help the team? Besides rating the skills, that says you know it's about the team, not just you.
  • As my manager, where would you like to see me after my first three to six months on the job? That tells you the manager's goals and signals your willingness to work with that manager.

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