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I need a killer question for my interview

(18 Posts)
maslinpan Fri 18-Nov-16 09:57:20

I have an interview on Monday, and I really want this job! I think I am a good fit for it, I am quite confident about talking about my experience and skills, but when they ask 'have you got any questions for us?', then I tend to panic. I won't ask about flexible working, because that puts the emphasis on what they can do for me, and I know I need to ask them something really well thought-out. What kind of thing do you ask? I just don't know how to pitch it.

OP’s posts: |
Kuriusoranj Fri 18-Nov-16 10:00:17

Don't know if it counts as a killer question but I always ask why people tend to leave the department/company and where they go on to. I often get platitudes but that tells me a lot in itself too.

Laststop Fri 18-Nov-16 10:02:22

Some thing about the reason for vancany e.g. Company growth department growth ?

Crystalline Fri 18-Nov-16 10:02:26

I honestly wouldn't worry about this too much. Whilst an ill-judged question might reflect badly or expose a lack of understanding, there is no point in asking a question unless you genuinely have one. If all goes well, then you will have a question in the course of the interview as they discuss the details of the job.

Secretspillernamechange Fri 18-Nov-16 10:04:19

A recruiter once told me that "what are the plans for the team/company over the next 3-5 years" is a safe bet and makes you look interested in the company as a long term prospect.

HidingFromDD Fri 18-Nov-16 10:04:35

what kind of business is it? I'd like something that shows you're viewing the wider impacts on the business eg 'what impact has the decision to leave the EU made on future strategy of the business', does depend on the type of job though!

Alternatively, 'how do you see the business developing in the next 3 years and how does my role/department/area support that' etc etc

Rainatnight Fri 18-Nov-16 10:08:02

I like the two questions above.

I tend to ask if they can describe the company culture. I genuinely want to know how they answer, but, especially if going for a leadership role, it makes you look like the kind of person who thinks about these things.

Woopsiedaisy Fri 18-Nov-16 10:08:52

I would want to ask what my growth opportunities / prospects would be in the next five years.

I always ask this and have walked away from two 'opportunties' where the answer revealed there were no likely prospects for development.

A mentor told me in my 20's that a role where you go nowhere, is a real CV killer. I think he was right !!

JamieVardysParty Fri 18-Nov-16 10:13:41

YY to the above, especially company culture, opportunities for LT&D etc. I'd also ask something along the lines of what targets etc they expect you to hit in the role/what you are supposed to achieve after 6 months/12 months. This gives you another idea if they expect to develop the role or just keep you static.

If they haven't said anything about it over the course of the interview, then something about reporting lines - who will you report into, more than one reporting line, where is this person based, how much exposure you will have to them etc.

maslinpan Fri 18-Nov-16 10:25:53

I am applying for an admin role at a university, so I guess some of your suggestions won't quite fit in. It may be a less high powered role, but I want to somehow convey that I have an active interest in the place rather than just thinking 'ooh - part time hours and commutable!'

OP’s posts: |
hutchblue Fri 18-Nov-16 10:28:09

Do a Google search on the industry that you are going to work in and find out some cutting edge info on what's going on in it.

You could say, last week I was reading about "XYZ and I saw that ABC is happening in the industry. Is that something this company is interested in? Is that a path this company might take?" Their response kind of shows how aspirational a company is and also shows them you're super-keen. smile

I'm not sure I'd ask about why people leave - it sounds a big negative IMHO. It sounds like you're looking for the negatives of the company - why they can't get people to stay?

But you could ask who did the role before you and why they left and where they are now and what it led to for them professionally?

Ie, was it a promotion internally or did they go onto something bigger and better. Personally I'm always curious about this answer and gives me info about the company that I like to know.

hutchblue Fri 18-Nov-16 10:31:08

Oh just cross posted. Well if it's for admin at a uni you could still find out about latest systems and working across groups and efficiencies for instance.

I was reading about Slack recently which is an online project management tool with messaging. Seems very current and very cheap!

maslinpan Fri 18-Nov-16 11:04:16

Thanks hutch, I like the question about where the previous post holder went professionally, it's a more positive spin on the question.

OP’s posts: |
indigox Fri 18-Nov-16 14:37:13

What's the team culture like?
What is involved in a typical day?
What are the challenges of the role?

Which uni department is it? It would be worth showing you have an interest in whatever school/courses etc. you'd be working with.

mammasmadhouse Fri 18-Nov-16 21:01:05

How about something along the lines of:

How do you see me best contributing to this role with the skills and experience I have and what can I do to build on and improve my current knowledge base to make the transition period easier for the department?

What do you see as the greatest challenge for someone in this role?

Good Luck

TopKittyKat Sat 19-Nov-16 09:06:49

I like to ask what I would find most challenging in the role. This can give you an insight into what it will be like.

Although most people won't reveal anything to put you off the job (remember they need you), i have had someone reply with "team dynamics" which revealed all was not well in the team.

Good luck OP!

GetHappy Sat 19-Nov-16 22:05:04

I would go for:
What would you expect of me, if successful, within the first 3 months of being in the post?

What training and mentoring opportunities do you give to staff?

Good Luck for Monday.

blueshoes Sat 19-Nov-16 22:57:20

Great thread. Taking notes ...

- Which of my skills do you see as most important for the challenges that come with the position.

- Can you tell me a little about the team I'll be working with. Shows you are a team player and gives you a chance to find out about the culture.

- What constitutes success with this position and organisation.

- Do you see any gaps in my skills or qualifications that I need to fill - gutsy question, shows interviewer you are willing to fill gaps. Even if you don't get the role, you got valuable intelligence to take to the next interview.

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