© Written By Jimmy Sweeney
President of CareerJimmy and Author of the new,
"Job Interview Secrets"
Knowing what questions to ask on a job interview is an important part of preparing to succeed on a job interview. The right question is more than just a way of eliciting information that you hope to find. It's a way of showing the interviewer that you are intelligent and informed on the subject, and that you recognize the important issues of the job. What's more, if strategically asked, you can use your job interview questions as springboards to give more information to the interviewers that will help your interview become successful.
The best questions to ask in a job interview are the ones that convey that you have the knowledge, skills, experience and personality the company is looking for. If you don't have a clear and detailed idea of what those skills, knowledge, experience and characteristics are then you will clearly need to do some research before you can even think about going to the job interview. In your research a good source of the guidance you seek is the job advertisement and job description the company has written up. These should tell you in fairly extensive detail the requirements of the target position. In addition to these technical requirements, you should familiarize yourself with the cultural and informal requirements of the job. A good way to start finding those will be to talk to some people who are familiar with the position and the target company and ask them what kind of people are attracted to the position and succeed at it.
Here is one way to apply the information you've gathered when it comes to the interview itself. Ask questions which reflect your interest in the issues the target company is most interested in. For instance, if the company has a formal or informal emphasis on mentoring and team building, you could ask a question about what kind of mentoring and team building procedures the company has. Or if the company has a tendency to reward the people who are the most detail conscious, you might want to ask a couple of questions which show that you are likely to follow up on issues and get more detailed information when something is unclear.
The other kind of questions to ask on a job interview is the kind that let you respond to the answer in a way that speaks to your possession of the desired qualities. For instance, if you took a lead role in your company's adoption of a new IT system, you might ask a question about the company's IT resources. If the interviewer mentions that they are putting a new one in, or that they are looking for new solutions, you would then speak a little about your experiences in as natural and unforced a manner as possible.
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