Interview Questions to Ask a Potential Employer - Unique Questions to Get Honest Answers

Updated on August 28, 2019
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Katy mentors young professionals beginning their careers and financial journeys to make informed decisions.

Looking for some good questions to ask in an interview?

Asking an employer questions after a stressful interview can be daunting. But if you the same boring questions you'll leave without information you need to decide on an offer. Worse, you'll miss your chance to show you're the best candidate for the job by the questions you ask.

This article has questions that will make you stand out and get you quality information. Read on to learn how to rock the candidate question part of the job interview.

Best questions to ask employer at the end of a job interview.
Best questions to ask employer at the end of a job interview. | Source

Why You Need to Prepare the Best Interview Questions

Questions that the candidate asks the employer at the end can be key for clinching the job offer. Even if it's not, your questions are your best shot at learning about the company before you decide on the job offer.

The end of an interview when you ask questions is your chance to stand out. Don't assume you'll be able to come up with questions on the fly. Prepare beforehand and come with a list in hand.

Remember: You’re interviewing them too. The job interview is the best place to get information you will use to decide if you even want to work there. And the questions you ask are your best shot of getting a clear picture of your future role at that company.

Standard Interview Questions to Ask Your Employer

Okay, let's get to it. There are some typical questions that get asked at the end of the interview.

These are standard for a reason: they reveal what you need to know about an employer. Some of them even emphasize your interest in the position. Or you can tweak them to show off your knowledge of the company.

Here are some typical questions asked by the candidate in a job interview:

  • What are the biggest challenges the company is facing in the next 5 years?
  • How do you measure success for someone in this role?
  • What do the day-to-day activities look like for this position?
  • What are the next steps in the interview process?
  • Describe the performance review process at this company.
  • What opportunities will I have for professional development?
  • How much customer interaction does this role have?
  • How much travel?

You don't have to ask every one. In fact, you shouldn't over use these! Hiring managers are hearing the same things from other candidates.
Make sure to mix in some unique questions from the list below or come up with your own.

Unique Questions to Ask

Don't ask the same questions as every other candidate! Unique questions can help you stand out or get you inside information about the new employer.
Consider adding some of these unique questions for your potential employer:

  • Based on what you know about me, what areas do you think I’m lacking for this role?
  • What is most difficult about this job?
  • In what ways have employees made your job difficult?
  • Why did the last person leave this position?
  • What is your (the manager's) leadership style?
  • What's the worst part about working here?
  • Why do you work for this company?
  • What was the last big mistake made on this project? How did leadership react?

I love using this list because the answers can be so revealing. A few of these will get me more information about a company's dynamic than working there for a year.

But here's a warning: consider your interviewer before you use these questions. Some are difficult to answer and some can even make the interviewer uncomfortable. Of course that’s the beauty of these unique questions: they will suss out information interviewers don't want to reveal to you.

Company Culture Questions

Getting a feel for the company's culture should be one of the goals you have for every interview.

How do you do that? Ask these questions to reveal a company's culture:

  • What’s the best way for me to ask for help in this role?
  • How is good performance rewarded?
  • Who will I be working most with? What are their titles?
  • What type of people do well at this company?

Red Flags

Watch out for anything that rubs you the wrong way about the answers. Trust your instincts if the answers show this company won't be a good match for you.

How To Use These Questions

First, a note on how to use these questions. This article contains lists of questions to ask the hiring manager at the end of a job interview. Read through them and consider whether you want to use each one. Make a list of the questions you want to ask and bring it to the interview.

Once your questions finish, read over your list of questions for the interviewee. Decide which ones they answered already or aren't important anymore.

How many questions should you ask the hiring manager? That can vary a lot depending on how much time you have and how complex they are. I aim for asking more than one question and less than how ever many will be annoying.

© 2019 Katy Medium

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