Five Questions to Avoid at Job Interviews
Sometimes asking inappropriate or unprofessional questions is worse than not asking any questions at all and can send the wrong signals to the hiring manager – here are the Job Interview questions to avoid asking.
We want you to nail your next interview, and in order to avoid awkward situations and help avoid asking the wrong things, here is our list of top 5 questions to avoid asking:
- What does your company do?
It may sound like a good way to get the conversation started – however, research on the company is compulsory before an interview so this question shouldn’t need to be asked as you should already know quite a bit about the company.
To the hiring manager, this question just shows that you are either struggling to think of anything to ask or you haven’t made any sort of effort to research the company.
Always avoid asking about anything that you could have learned about or read up on through researching the company. Try to focus on the specifics in more detail – it will demonstrate that you’ve done your homework:
Example: I saw that your company has recently [insert fact].Can you tell me a bit more about this?
- Can I move into other areas of the business?
Perhaps you see the position you are applying for as a stepping stone to something else – but let the recruiter know this and they’re unlikely to give you the opportunity.
Try and exhibit your drive and enthusiasm for the position you are going for and you will increase your chances of securing the job which will then go on to possible progression routes.
Try and ask questions such as: ‘what are the promotion prospects?’ and ‘what are the opportunities for development?’
- How Much Sick Pay Do I Get?
You haven’t even secured the job yet and you are already planning your absence?! – Not the best way to come across.
If this is something you are genuinely interested to find out, wait until the offer has been made or until you receive your contract.
Unless you have a specific medical reason for asking, it is best to steer clear.
- What is the Nightlife Life?
For some people, the social aspect of work is an important part – however, there is a time and place for everything. Your first interview is not the correct time to ask about nightlife and best places to go.
Asking about the team and culture is fine – but social aspects of the job should come up naturally after you have the job.
Try asking questions like: ‘How many other people are there in the team?’ or “What’s the best thing about the company’s culture?’
- How Did I Do?
This questions could be a deal-breaker! It may seem harmless or even humorous at the time – but regardless of the amount of rapport you feel you have built, asking how you did is going to put the interviewer in an uncomfortable position. It is also unlikely that they will be able to provide you with the answer you are looking for.
Instead, ask when you can expect to hear from them and send a follow-up email thanking them for their time – it is a much better reflection.
You could ask: “Could you describe your ideal candidate?” or “When can I expect to hear from you?”
Other Job Interview questions to avoid include:
- How long will this take?
- How important is it that I turn up on time?
- What is your Social Media policy?
- How long will I get for lunch?
- What is the holiday entitlement?
- What is the salary?
- What is your maternity policy?
- Does the company monitor emails?
- Do you perform background checks?
- Do you fancy going for a drink after this?
Some of these job interview questions may seem like common sense – but to some people, they seem like perfectly normal questions to ask! But some of these will simply set off alarm bells with the person interviewing you.
The best advice is to just listen! That way you can avoid asking a question that has already been answered for you. Also, be prepared.
List a few questions you wish to ask before you arrive at the interview. This will keep embarrassing and potentially awkward situations to a minimum as you will have mentally prepared yourself.
And make sure you don’t just pull out a list of questions in the interview and read them out!