‘Do you have any questions for us?’ asks the interviewer and the merriment of the interviewee knows no bounds. The question is also an itsy-bitsy indication that the interview is going in the right direction. However, only a few comprehend this golden opportunity and ask relevant questions to the interviewing panel.
So, the next time you appear for an interview or if you are all geared to appear for your first job interview, and you come across such a moment, don’t let these questions skip through the cracks.
“How will I be trained?”
Consider this real life example. When a firm dealing in modular kitchen hired nine students of different MBA specializations from one of the leading B-schools in India, the students had no clue about the modular kitchen industry. However, during their interview with the management, all of them were concerned about the training they would receive. The management assured them a 1-month training period before the actual work allotment, easing the worries of the students.
The training you receive in the first months of joining a new job, is crucial and sets the tone for the job you are undertaking. All in all, insist on your training. Make sure you are well-trained and supported during the initial days of your work.
‘Can you please throw some light on my responsibilities?’
‘I am an MBA from a top-notch distance education university. I am going to be a manager, of course.’ If this if what is racing in your mind, then you need to fine-tune your thinking. No matter whether you are an MBA in marketing or HR, you don’t become a manager or hold a top position directly out of college.
You start in an organization by shouldering smaller responsibilities first. So, make sure to ask about your responsibilities before signing the appointment letter, to avoid any surprises when you actually start working at the organisation.
‘Could you please describe the culture of the company?’
You cannot understand the culture of a company by reading about it online. You get to understand it when you either experience it or hear it from someone who has been a part of it.
‘Where do you see the company in the next three years?’
Many believe that this is not a right question to ask or that it sounds rude. However, there is a need to understand that it is for your own benefit. You invested efforts, time and money on your distance education or on your on-campus education, and you have the full right to have a vision for your career growth. The company’s growth will play a pivotal role in helping you in achieving this vision.
So, do not hesitate to ask this question.
‘Are there any challenges that the company is going through?’
‘Who cares? I am selected in the company and that is more than enough.’ – discard any such thought in your head. When you don’t clarify such an important question, you invite unnecessary trouble.
Perhaps a competitor is planning to come up with a new product, the attrition rate in the company is high or there could be some other problem that could directly or indirectly hamper your growth or put you under pressure.
However, look at this from a positive angle. There is a challenge that the company is facing and you know an easy and effective way out. In such a case, you could really leave a good impression on the mind of your interviewers or the management. In both the cases, it is a win-win situation for you!
There is no such thing as a stupid question
Remember, an interview is a two-way street. If the interviewer is asking questions to find a right candidate, you have the freedom to ask questions to ensure that you get into a right company. Above all, if you do not prepare questions for the interviewer, he might believe that you are not interested in the profile.
As Colin Wright put it – “Ignorance is a temporary affliction, remedied only by asking the right questions.’