The Right Questions to Ask to Ace an Interview
MY TAKEAWAY FROM JOB INTERVIEWS well, I’ve interviewed 4 companies in 3 days last week, and 1 this week. Plus had 2 about 4 months ago. Interviews usually last from 40 minutes to an hour. I am splitting the interview into 3 main parts:
1. Questions about the job
2. Future of the company
3. About Yourself
About Yourself can also come first, depending on who drives the conversation. Usually as an interviewee, I drive the conversation, unless your interviewer is more engaged than you are. So when I talk, I talk about myself last. But if they talk, they usually want to know more about you first.
- Questions about the job:
- What does day to day look like?
- How are the teams structured locally and globally? In-house? Outsourced?
- What sorts of people will I be working with or supporting? Will I be facing clients / partners?
- Who do I report to?
- What kind of tools are you using for the workflow? And you may ask more specific questions about these tools or how they’re being used.
- Any examples of projects/ new features you guys have worked on? What was the process?
- What are your current bottlenecks? What are you lacking help on?
- What are you guys working on now? e.g. Automation? New products?
- What is the onboarding timeline? How much longer are you looking at getting someone onboard? Who else do I have to interview/ how many rounds more?
- Future of the company:
- Study the competitors and ask, how does your company compete against the rest? What’s your edge? (Please know their edges already by heart if you can)
- What are some of the big plans the company has for growth?
- Any development in China? This is a question for companies expanding into Asia.
- Who drives the vision and strategy? Local? or Headquarters in Americas / Europe?
- What are the types of users / audience the product is catered to? Are you trying to gear towards new groups of users?
- Any regulations limiting the business? Or plays as an advantage to the business?
- About yourself:
- Talk about your career path in a nutshell. Could be from most recent to oldest or vice versa. Condense as much as possible.
- Talk more about what your latest job entailed. Highlight anything that is relevant to the role you’re interviewing for.
- What were the biggest challenges in that job
- What are you most proud of in that job
- Examples of how you drove decisions with major stakeholders, e.g. enhancements, new tools, etc.
- Why are you leaving / do you want to leave your job (be careful with this one)
Questions employers will sometimes ask you:
- What do you do outside of work?
- How do you handle stress?
- What are you looking for in the next company you join?
Not many will ask this but ones that do want you to show that you’re super eager to come onboard. So you can say, good training, some mentorship, flexibility, more challenges. Don’t say work-life balance and benefits (holidays, insurance). I once hired someone who asked me about holidays, I’m like WTF come on.
Points to remember:
- Be honest about your situation
- They really care about your latest salary, but they don’t care if you were underpaid
- If you have irrelevant experience, make that your edge and say that you offer something different that others don’t and it’s an advantage for the company. The value is in that you can think out of the box.
- Smile as much as you can, it relaxes both you and the interviewers and improves the flow of the conversation
- Don’t show that you’re really sick and tired of your current / previous job, that makes people think that you’re only trying to get out
- Rave about your previous jobs, and show that you’re proud of your accomplishments
- Explain the reason that you’re leaving for either career path reasons or health reasons. If your job ghosted because of offshoring, then talk about how you improved your skill sets to make yourself less replaceable.
GOOD LUCK EVERYONE!!