5 Job Interview Questions You Should Be Asking

by Jennifer Sigler | May 17, 2017 | Workhappy Blog

Consider your interview a chance to learn more about the company you are targeting.

Job interviews are stressful — even after thorough preparation.

It is easy to forget that interviews are a two-way street: Companies are gauging your qualifications and fit for the position in question, but the interview is also a time for you to get to determine if the company passes its mission statement. What is it actually like to work for them? This is why it is just as vital for you to ask questions in an interview.

(Not to mention, if you don’t ask any smart questions, then you run the risk of appearing underprepared or unengaged…)

If there is one thing we’re sure of, it’s that being happy in your job is important — in more ways that just in enjoying the type of work you perform. In fact, according to a 2012 study, 80 percent of polled adults ages 18 to 29 prioritized being happy in their jobs over making a lot of money. Eighty percent. This is the type of stuff that gets us excited over here at UpWrite.

And happiness in your job is heavily dependent on the answers to the following five questions:

What makes this a great place to work, in your opinion?

The answer to this differs from person to person, which is why it’s interesting to see what the hiring manager emphasizes. A flexible schedule? Supportive ethos?  Opportunities for advancement? If you have established a good rapport throughout the interview, don’t be afraid to ask how long they’ve been with the company.

How would you describe the company culture?

Since we spend a significant amount of time at work, the company culture plays a key role in our happiness within our position. Knowing what team collaboration looks like for this company can highlight an inclusive atmosphere, for example. Do employees often eat lunch together, or do people tend to stick to themselves? Are there any events or other organized activities the office does for fun? A positive work culture and company perks often times help keep your attitude positive on trying days — or days when you love the actual work less.

What do you feel is the most crucial quality for success at this company?

You want to learn as much as you can about the role you are applying for during the job interview so that you can determine if it truly is a good fit for your qualifications and personality. But this also goes for the company in a broader stroke. Knowing that the executive hiring you feels that collaboration and creativity are the most crucial qualities for success is good to know now – before you start a position – if you are a person who prefers to work alone.

In what ways does the company help its employees grow professionally?

This is a great question that usually provides information that is not in the job description. You can learn if a company prefers to promote from within, and how career advancement is structured. Do they offer workshops, pay for employees to attend conferences or obtain advanced certifications? If they have to think about it too long before they answer, this could be an indication that professional growth is not a priority to them. And if you are going to invest your time and effort into a company, you’ll want to be sure that they are prepared to invest in you.

Where do you think the company is heading in the next five years? Ten years?

Knowing what’s coming up for the company will give you a good indication of the direction your career might go. Ask about the largest opportunities facing the company right now, as well as the challenges. Does the company have big dreams to grow? Or do they want to maintain a smaller corporate structure, and focus on giving quality service/products to a specialized clientele?

If you want to get the most out of your job interview, you need to gain a complete and persuasive picture of the company — not just the position. You will work happier with a company that prioritizes its employees and demonstrates this commitment in well-defined policies, programs and philosophies. View yourself as an asset — Do they deserve you?

Jennifer Sigler is a Senior Writer with The UpWrite Group. Send a message to services@TheUpWriteGroup.com to see how she can help enhance your corporate or personal brand.

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