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Questions you'd like to ask at interview but don't dare

(30 Posts)
cheminotte Fri 10-Jul-15 21:43:11

So I'm looking for a new job and its always good to have questions for the interviewer and to try and understand if you actually want to work there.
I'd really like to ask about the gender split within the team and especially at senior level, but I can't really can I?

00100001 Fri 10-Jul-15 21:44:43

I'd like to ask "how valued do the staff feel" or similar

RibbonJar Fri 10-Jul-15 21:52:20

I'd love to ask "Do your employees like you?"

I worked for a really unpleasant bully once and wonder how he would have answered that.

RJnomore Fri 10-Jul-15 21:53:45

I'd like to ask "how do I get YOUR job"?

cheminotte Sat 11-Jul-15 08:24:33

Yes I sometimes ask 'what's your management style?' - but no-one has ever admitted to being a micro-manager!

2fedup Sat 11-Jul-15 08:28:20

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Trapper Sat 11-Jul-15 08:50:34

What's your maternity leave policy?
Have any members of your team requested reduced hours, and were their requests successful?
How many days a week would I be allowed to work from home?
Are employees expected to pay for their own Christmas party?
How many days of sickness are we allowed each year before HR get involved?

SeahorseSid Sat 11-Jul-15 08:58:29

I think all these are fair questions, it's just how you ask them! Ie:
- do you have an agile working policy?
- can you tell me about career progression in the company? Eg I'd love to hear how you moved to your level
- what are the team dynamics like, how do you build teams and make sure they work well?

I think an interview is just as much about you seeing if this organisation is going to be a good match for you as you for them. I wouldn't be put off by a candidate wanting to explore any of those areas. And some of our most effective people use agile working.

SeahorseSid Sat 11-Jul-15 09:00:56

And for the question in the OP, what is your organisation's approach to diversity. Any decent company will have an answer.

AndDeepBreath Sat 11-Jul-15 09:17:18

It's interesting, if someone asked about gender divides I probably wouldn't be fazed as an interviewer, and I might think you were ambitious and eyeing up a top job one day ... but then our entire team is accessible online so it's not exactly secret.

You could ask about the structure of the team and how you'd fit in, you might hear something incidentally about genders there? "Bob's our account manager, Sarah's our PA"?

slug Sat 11-Jul-15 10:09:08

I was on an interview panel not long ago. One candidate, the successful one, asked the best question and one I am totally going to use the next time I have an interview

"What do you like about working at ..."

cheminotte Sat 11-Jul-15 19:17:24

What is agile working? Is it the same as flexible working?
Questions about team dynamics sound good but I'm always a bit sceptical of policies. HR may have written a great policy about equal opportunities but I want to know if I'm going to be the only woman on the team that's not admin.

cheminotte Sat 18-Jul-15 21:24:59

Another one for a future male boss - does your wife work, if so as what? Men with sahm are less understanding of wohm pressures than if their wife also has a career in my experience.

Chchchchanging Tue 21-Jul-15 08:40:47

Agile working is working in different locations/ offices occasionally
Flex working is the hours worked
Do if you work normal hours but worked from home one day it's agile
If you want to pick up kids and finish at 2pm its flexi

FindingNormal Tue 21-Jul-15 15:58:49

Wow trapper, those are the questions that would mean you definitely wouldn't get the job!!

ThatBloodyWoman Tue 21-Jul-15 16:03:30

I asked what the staff turnover was like,and whether I could adjust the hours asked for to suit my childcare needs.

titchy Tue 21-Jul-15 16:10:16

So what's the office banter like? blush

Amara123 Tue 21-Jul-15 18:36:17

I asked my interviewer to describe the culture of their department. She was really surprised to get asked this but actually gave a fairly accurate answer which was useful!

GoooRooo Tue 21-Jul-15 18:39:26

I work in recruitment.

cheminotte you can ask about the gender split. I don't see the problem with that at all.

SeahorseSid's way of wording it is perfect.

Sapat Tue 21-Jul-15 18:40:50

Trapper you would not get the job where I work, sounds very grabby!

You could ask about the team, staff turnover, typical career progression, possibly diversity if you must. In my field there are usually 70 applicants to every post, so the merest whiff of trouble and you would be on your way. I also would stay clear of asking personal questions, asking an interviewer what their wife does for a living would not be acceptable or appropriate.

LoveActuary Tue 21-Jul-15 18:46:22

Why is the position vacant?

happygirl87 Tue 21-Jul-15 18:49:30

I thought that was the point of Trappers post, in response to the thread title- they are qus you wouldn't dare ask?!

DrHarleenFrancesQuinzel Tue 21-Jul-15 22:00:21

My question I always ask has been said. "Why do you work here" or sometimes its "what are the best and worse things about working here"

They usually go down well.

One question I wanted to ask once, but didn't have the guts even though I had decided by this point I didn't want the job was "why should I work for you?" I wanted to bring the interviewer down a peg or two as she was totally up herself and spoke to me like a piece of shit straight away. I left without asking anything.

itsmeitscathy Tue 21-Jul-15 22:38:33

I always ask what the interviewers are most excited about in the next three months. if they can't answer then it shows a lack of enthusiasm about their own job which is worrying if they'll be managing me

FindingNormal Tue 21-Jul-15 23:05:41

Ah I see your point happy girl re trappers post... Sorry trapper! Note to self: read post more thoroughly!

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