May 3, 2024

When preparing for interviews, people spend the vast majority of their time thinking about questions they could be asked. While this makes perfect sense, many people don’t put enough thought into questions to ask a prospective employer. After all, an interview is not only about selling your experiences to employers but also about identifying whether a company is the right one for you. With this in mind, here are the top eight questions to ask an interviewer.

What Does a Typical Day Look Like?

This is a valuable question to ask an interviewer for a number of reasons. First, it’s an excellent way to ask about the specific expectations for a position. The interviewer will respond by describing how they see the person in the role functioning. These answers will allow you to determine if you can picture yourself in the role. Additionally, some jobs have lots of variabilities, and there may not be a typical day. Asking this question can help inform you of that as well.

Are There Opportunities for Professional Development?

There are many benefits that employers can offer in addition to compensation. One is encouraging your professional development. Many employers will provide incentives for staff to further their education or training. Some will provide funding for improving skills that will make you more effective at your job. Asking this question to an interviewer helps determine a company’s level of investment in your growth.

What Are the Most Important Things to Do in the First 60 Days on the Job?

One of the most valuable things to learn as a prospective employee is what your boss expects of you. A good way of determining this is to ask about expectations for the most important accomplishments during the first 60 days (or three months or six months). This can help you get a sense of how quickly you need to get up to speed.

What Metrics Will I Be Evaluated Against?

It’s always good to know how you will be evaluated in a particular job. Will your performance be assessed on the accomplishment of specific goals? Will you be evaluated based on the skills that you demonstrate? Asking this question allows you to get a sense of a company’s assessment processes and what they value most.

How Would You Describe the Organizational Culture?

A company’s organizational culture can make or break your enjoyment of working there. Asking about organizational culture during a job interview can help you get a sense of the company’s values. While no one will tell you they have a negative culture, you may be able to pick up on warning signs. Additionally, you can learn other information, such as whether a company encourages collaboration, leadership, and other things from their employees.

How Does One Advance in the Company?

This is a great way to phrase the question if you’re curious about upward mobility. First, it puts the ownership of getting promoted on you, which can come across positively. Secondly, you’ll be able to learn not only if there are opportunities for promotion but also how to demonstrate that you are ready for the next level. This question is great to ask an interviewer from large organizations.

What Are the Biggest Challenges Someone in This Role Should Expect?

Asking this question is a good way of learning about the challenges you will have to navigate if you are selected for the position. It’s an excellent question to ask an interviewer if the organization is larger or going through changes in its organizational structure, as it can shed more information on how things like this may affect your role. It can also allow you to discuss your passion for taking on a particular challenge, if applicable.

What Do You Enjoy Most About Working Here?

This is a great question to ask an interviewer to get a sense of how well they enjoy working for the company. If they seem to have difficulty forming an answer, that could be a hint to look for other signs of negative work environments. However, if they seem genuinely thrilled about their work and team, that’s a great indicator that it’s a good place to work. Focus on their emotions and body language just as much as what they say in response.

While interviews are certainly an opportunity to showcase your skills and experience, you should also be ready to ask an employer a few questions as well. This list provides you with a starting point for what questions you should ask when it’s your turn at the end of the interview.

At Achēv, our Employment Ontario Services offers a wide range of resources to support your career and employment needs. Our employment centres are located across the Greater Toronto Area, including Toronto, Brampton, Mississauga and North York. Contact us today to register for our free employment services.

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