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September 2, 2022 Category: Jobs (7 minutes read)

Questions You Should Never Ask During an Interview

It's typical for an employer to ask candidates if they have any questions regarding the position or the firm at the end of a job interview. You might make use of this occasion to ask intelligent questions regarding the job requirements, performance measures, work environment, or corporate culture. Knowing which questions to ask and which to avoid might help you demonstrate your enthusiasm for the role to potential employers. 

In this post, we discuss what types of questions to avoid asking during an interview, present a list of 12 questions not to ask an interviewer, and provide 10 questions to help you make a good impression.

What kinds of questions should you not ask an interviewer?

During a job interview, it's critical to ask meaningful, relevant questions to demonstrate your professionalism and enthusiasm for the new work. Good questions can help you make a good impression on an interviewer and increase your chances of getting a job offer. Other inquiries, such as those focused on the job's amenities rather than performance, may have an impact on the interviewer's perception of your dedication to the new role. In general, the following are some questions to avoid asking an interviewer:

  • Basic questions: Before an interview, employers want candidates to research the role and the company. Instead, ask detailed questions that you couldn't discover by reading the job description or examining the company's website.

  • Other jobs: While it is acceptable to inquire about the possibility of growth in the role you are applying for, focusing on other roles within the organization may indicate to employers that you are not serious about the position.

  • Salary and benefits: Asking about wages and benefits will affect your interviewer's perception of your dedication and interest in the new employment unless the business addresses these matters first. If you obtain a job offer, you can discuss these topics with the company.

  • Personal questions: It is unprofessional to ask questions about your interviewer that are unrelated to the job. Instead, to demonstrate your professionalism, ask questions about the interviewer's experience with the organization and their career path.

  • Changes to the position or environment: Asking questions about substantial changes you can make to the job or the organization can come out as impolite. Instead, you might ask questions to demonstrate that you have ideas for the new role and that you want to help the organization flourish.

12 questions not to ask an interviewer

It's useful to know the questions to avoid asking during a job interview to make a good impression on hiring managers. Here are 12 questions not to ask during a job interview, along with explanations of what you should ask instead:

  1. What does the job entail?

It is critical to research the position before an interview so that you grasp the obligations and expectations of the post. This research demonstrates to employers that you are serious about the position and can also assist you in determining whether it is a job you truly desire. Instead of asking this question, inquire about what a typical day in the role entails. These detailed questions might provide more information about the position and help you decide if it is a suitable fit for you.

  1. What does this company do?

In addition to studying the position, it is critical to obtain basic information about the organization to prepare properly for the interview. Make sure you understand the company's mission and purpose so you can refer to them while speaking with an employer. You can also ask questions about other parts of the organization that you couldn't locate on your own, such as its culture or recent triumphs. These questions demonstrate to employers that you are serious about the new position, which can help you make a good impression.

  1. Who are the company's main competitors?

Before an interview, you may frequently determine a company's competitors by conducting an online search. If you haven't previously searched for the answer, don't pose this question. In this scenario, you might structure the inquiry in a way that demonstrates to employers that you completed your homework on the organization. As an example, you may state, "I looked online for other interior design firms in the region but couldn't find any. What companies do you consider the company's immediate competitors?"

  1. Are any other jobs open

It's important to keep your questions focused on the position you're applying for, which shows employers you're excited about the role. Many employers want to hire candidates interested in staying and growing within the role. If you're interested in advancing your career, you may mention your long-term goals to an employer and ask whether the company provides advancement opportunities. For example, you may say, "I'm passionate about this industry and may have an interest in pursuing future positions within the company. Are there opportunities for advancement in this job?"

  1. When can I expect to receive a promotion or raise?

It is customary to refrain from asking inquiries regarding a position's pay or benefits until you have received an official job offer. Instead, inquire about how the organization evaluates employee performance and what metrics it may apply to assess success. These questions will help you discover how you may excel in the position, which may lead to prospects for advancement or compensation increases.

  1. When can I start taking vacation days or sick time?

Even if the employer is still interviewing other candidates, asking this question may give the impression that you are expecting a job offer. You can ask a follow-up question on these benefits if an employer discusses the company's time-off policy first during an interview. Otherwise, ask this question after you've received a job offer to demonstrate your professionalism.

  1. Are you going to check my references or do a background check?

Assume that your references will be checked if you offer them as part of your job application. As a result, it is critical to carefully select your references to ensure they can speak highly about your professional talents and work ethic. Similarly, many firms will do background checks before making an employment offer. Pre-employment screening questions may prompt employers to question your background and qualifications, therefore it's better to avoid them during a job interview. 

  1. Can I work from home?

While some firms may provide remote or hybrid workspaces, such features are usually made known in job descriptions or interviews. Unless you're interviewing for remote employment, avoid inquiring about the possibility of working from home, as this will make you appear uninterested in engaging with the team. Instead, ask questions to ascertain team dynamics or corporate culture, which can provide useful information about the office environment in which you may be working.

  1. Do you care about the dress code?

Before an interview, you may typically identify a company's dress code by checking its website or reviewing its social media accounts. If not, you can expect an employer to share this information with you if the position is offered to you. Dress appropriately for an interview, regardless of a company's dress code, to demonstrate your professionalism. Wearing business-appropriate attire can help you make a good impression on potential employers.

  1. Do you want to get coffee with me?

To establish professional boundaries, avoid asking inquiries regarding social engagements during a job interview. If an interviewer is warm and frank, consider following up with an email after the interview, expressing your interest in their professional experience and asking any work-related questions. These questions can help employers see you as thoughtful and considerate, which may influence their hiring choice.

  1. Do you like your boss?

While you may wish to learn more about the office atmosphere or corporate culture, do not ask the interviewer to pass judgment on their coworkers or superiors. Instead, ask these types of inquiries affirmatively. For example, you could inquire about workplace issues to better prepare yourself to contribute positively as a new employee.

  1. What's the worst thing about working here?

While asking intelligent questions during an interview is beneficial, avoid asking unpleasant ones. These questions may have an impact on how the company perceives you as a candidate. Instead, inquire in-depth about a company's challenges and successes. You could, for example, ask the interviewer why they are proud to work for the company. These questions can help employers see you as a potential asset to the company.

So, remember to avoid questions about salary and benefits, holiday time, remote working arrangements, and company culture during your next job interview. Instead, try asking the interviewer about their experience with the company or what types of qualities they look for in successful candidates. The more you know about the organization and the role itself, the better equipped you’ll be to make a good impression and score the job you want. Do you have any other suggestions for impressing potential employers during an interview? Let us know in the comments below!