7 Interview Questions Not to Ask

September 3rd, 2013 | Articles, Interviewing | No Comments »

At the end of the job interview, when the hiring manager has asked you everything on his or her mind, you’re usually given the floor to ask a few questions of your own. Those job seekers who have prepared lists tend to fair better than those who try to improv their responses but if you ask the wrong question, you can liquefy your chances of landing a new career just as quickly. So, you may wonder which questions you should avoid asking. Here is our list of seven deadly questions that can ruin your chances at the job of your dreams.

1.) “Is this job going to be a lot of work?”

There are ways to ask about your future workload without sounding like the laziest sloth alive. A better way of phrasing the question is “what types of projects will I be working on regularly,” or “What types of projects can I expect to be juggling?” That way, you sound more active and engaged while essentially asking the same question.

2.) “How much money are you going to pay me?”

This question sounds like a schoolyard shakedown. Even if you spruce up the language, you still give the impression that your primary focus is seeing how many dead presidents and founding fathers you can fit in your pockets. People who are strictly money motivated tend not to stay around for long, so most hiring managers will opt not to waste any more time and money on a future turncoat.

3.) “What’s you policy on vacation?” Or “What type of extra goodies can I expect?”

So, maybe you didn’t ask about salary but this is just as bad. Never talk about vacation, benefits, perks, or anything else that suggests your mind will be anywhere else but on your work during the course of your shift. Most companies are loath to hire those nine-to-fivers who hover over the time clock awaiting the moment they can escape from the office into the outside world. A better way to find out this information is to ask about the company culture (often, you’ll be provided with the above information without having to explicitly ask).

4.) “What does your company…do?”

If you go into the interview and come out the other side completely oblivious about what the company does, no one should want to hire you. This type of question screams disinterest and apathy.

5.) “Do you immediately run drug tests or do I have at least a week?”

An instant no-hire.

6.) “When can I start telecommuting?”

Hiring managers are going to wonder why you’re so eager to get out of the office. Then, they’ll decided they didn’t want you around in the first place. Don’t ever talk about telecommuting unless the company brings it up first or you’ve long since proven your worth on the job.

7.) “How many strikes do I get before I’m fired?”

The ultimate warning siren. You’re practically admitting that you’re going to press people’s buttons and cross the HR line as much as you can without being fired. No one wants to be responsible for hiring the office jerk.

by James Walsh

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