What questions should you ask the job interviewer at the end of the interview? These questions ensure you find out what you need to know — and that you also make a great impression.
- “What top skills and qualities do all of your top performers have in common?”
Great people want to be great employees. They know every organization is different — and so are the key qualities of top performers in those organizations.
Maybe the top performers work longer hours. Maybe creativity is more important than methodology. Maybe constantly landing new customers in new markets is more important than building long-term customer relationships. Maybe being willing to spend the same amount of time educating an entry-level customer as helping an enthusiast who wants high-end equipment is what really makes a difference..
Ultimately, you 1) want to know if you will fit in, and 2) if you do fit in, how you can be a top performer.
- “What is the key driver of results in this job?”
Employees are investments, and employers expect employees to generate a positive return on their salaries. (Otherwise why have they on the payroll?)
In every job, some activities make a bigger difference than others. Maybe you need your HR team to fill job openings, but what you really want is for them to find the right candidates, because that results in higher retention rates, lower training costs, and better overall productivity. Maybe you need your service techs to perform effective repairs, but what you really want is for those techs to identify ways to solve problems and provide other benefits — in short, to build customers relationships and even generate additional sales.
You want to know what truly makes a difference and drives results, because you know that helping the company succeed means you will succeed as well.
- “What do you expect me to accomplish in the first 90 days?”
You want to hit the ground running. You don’t want to spend weeks or months “getting to know the organization.” You don’t want to spend huge chunks of time in orientation, in training, or in the futile pursuit of getting your feet wet.
You want to make a difference — and you want to make that difference right now.
- “What are the company’s highest priority goals this year, and how would my role contribute?”
Is the job you will fill important? Does it matter?
You want a job with meaning, with a larger purpose — and you want to work with people who approach their jobs the same way.
Otherwise a job… is just a job.
- “What percentage of your employees were ‘recruited’ by existing employees?”
Employees who love their jobs naturally recommend their company to their friends and peers.
The same is true for people in leadership positions — people naturally try to bring on board talented people they previously worked with. They’ve built relationships, developed trust, and shown a level of competence that made someone go out of their way to follow them to a new organization. And all of that speaks incredibly well to the quality of the workplace and the culture.
- “What do employees do in their spare time?”
Happy employees 1) like what they do, and 2) like the people they work with.
Granted, this can be a tough question to answer. Unless the company is really small, all the interviewer can do is speak in generalities. Or he or she can pick out a few people and describe what they do outside of work — and if they can’t even do that, they don’t know your employees nearly well enough.