Almost no one knows to do this
Interviews are nerve-racking.
You never know the exact questions they are going to ask you. Even if you have been to a lot, there always tends to be that curveball question that you weren’t expecting.
It’s the question that makes you say “umm…” while you stare at your shoelaces as if they have the perfect answer.
You feel stupid or maybe you think you destroyed your chance of getting hired, despite doing a good job up to that point.
We have all been there before.
Usually, it’s the last question they ask.
They then tell you that they’ll be in touch and send you on your way. But Wait! Is there a better way to interview?
How To Turn The Tables
The end of your interview is your time to turn the table.
this is a crucial opportunity that most people don’t take advantage of. In fact, if you do it right, it can shoot you up to the top of the hiring list.
Please, for the love of God ask them some questions. They don’t even have to be good. Any questions will do.
If you don’t ask them questions, it comes off like you don’t care about the position. It makes you look unprofessional and leaves a bad impression on your interviewers.
Make sure to bring a list of questions to ask.
An Easy Way to Sperate Yourself From the Get-Go
We will get to the best question to ask soon. But first, take this additional interview tip free of charge.
Bring a notebook and pen.
Take notes while the person is explaining how the company works and the specifics relating to your job.
You’ll most likely be one of the few people who bring a notepad to the interview. Chances are, you’ll be the only person.
This is a trick I learned some time ago when going to my first job interview. I was nervous and was voicing my feelings to a mentor.
Bring a notebook. This will automatically separate you from all the other applicants. It’s something that will make you stand out in a sea of resumes. You’ll be known as the “notebook guy.”
At first, I thought it would look stupid. I did it anyway since I had no reason to not try it.
When they commented on how they liked the fact that I took notes, I knew my mentor was on to something. Ever since then, I have brought a notebook to every job interview since.
The Best Question To Ask
Alright, here it is. The moment you’ve been waiting for.
So the end of the interview comes. Two things will happen from here.
- They will thank you for stopping by and tell you they will be in touch. This is the time when you say you have questions for them.
- They will tell you that they have no more questions and will ask you if you have any. This is a better sign and makes it easier for you to shine.
If the first option happens, don’t panic. Politely tell them that you have some questions about x and you would appreciate it if they answered them.
If the second option happens, lead with your more generic questions first. Once you ask three or four easier questions hit them with this:
What is something that this department can do better/or is lacking? As a part of that question, what is something that I could do/bring to improve the department/company overall?
The point is, you are now putting them on the spot. I can promise you that no other applicant asked them this question.
This question will show that you are thinking critically, that you realize there are always places to improve and are ready to accept a challenge.
Any variation of this question will work.
Anything along the lines of “what are the weaknesses and what can I do to fix them” is perfect.
Plus, if you do end up getting the job, you will know exactly what you can do to make an immediate impact.
You will have a headstart on your peers and will outshine them from the beginning.
You will also be able to tell how the interviewer is in a leadership role and if they are squared away. I have heard some bad answers to this question over the years.
One time I was told there was no way the department could improve. Obviously, this isn’t true. Why are you hitting people if everything is perfect?
Another time a manager told me that he wasn’t sure what needed to be improved and he would have to think about it.
This is another bad sign.
If a person in a leadership position doesn’t know what needs to be improved, they aren’t paying attention. It means they are going with the flow and will blame you as soon as something goes wrong.
Going to a job interview is not supposed to be one-sided.
It’s not supposed to be you getting grilled with questions and them only evaluating you.
An interview is a chance to see if you’re a good fit to work with them or the company. That means that you should be asking questions about them and the company as well.
They want to see if they should hire you. You should want to see if you want to work with them.
Allow yourself to have some control in the interview process. Make sure you ask some questions. The more specific the question the better.
Keep this in mind next time you are stressing about answering a ton of questions from a random person. Try not to be nervous and remember that you have the chance to ask questions as well.