The 5 top questions you should ask during your job interview


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Some companies continue to hire aggressively during the Great Reshuffle, while others are laying employees off en masse. This unpredictability highlights how the interviewing process isn’t only for the company to decide whether they want to hire you. It’s also for you to determine whether the company offers an opportunity that fits into your long-term plans.


Luckily, asking your interviewer questions is standard practice. In fact, it’s likely to improve your chances of landing a job. Read on to find out good interview questions to ask to help you identify the perfect job opportunity.

What Questions to Ask in a Job Interview

Interviewing your interviewer can seem a little backward, but it’s best to come with some questions prepared. These queries will help you determine if the role is a good fit. They also give the interviewer the impression you’re proactive and forward-thinking.


“If you’re prepared… and want to shine, it’s important to have some good questions to ask at the end,” Nomana Mizra, HR and culture manager at Absolute Digital Media, says. “This is one way that you can separate yourself from other applicants.”


Here are some great questions to ask at your next interview and what kind of answers to look for.

1. What Are the Day-to-Day Responsibilities of the Role?

Reading the job description helps you determine if a position is the right fit for you. However, it can often leave out more minor responsibilities—or even the fact that the scope of the role may change frequently. For this reason, during an interview, you’ll want to clarify what day-to-day responsibilities you’ll have.


“The interviewer’s reaction to questions asked by candidates can say a lot about the reality of things,” Yolaine Amaro, career adviser and resume expert at Resume Genius, says. “In this case, if they try to dodge the question, this is a sign that the work experience candidates will get may differ from what they were expecting from the job description.”


Asking this question also shows hiring managers that you care about the work you’ll be doing. In addition, it can demonstrate your interest in the position and show that you’re a proactive candidate. (Looking for more concrete answers? Forage offers free virtual work experiences to help you experience the day-to-day duties in various roles at major U.S. companies.)

2. Are There Opportunities for Advancement Within the Company?

The day-to-day responsibilities seem like a perfect fit for you, but is there room for your professional growth? Being stuck in a job with no path forward is a quick way to start feeling stagnant in your career and possibly underpaid.


Make sure you ask about training and advancement opportunities for employees. If a company doesn’t promote from within, you may want to look for one that does. If your interviewer is reluctant to give solid answers, try asking what their personal experience of growth within the company has been like instead.

3. How Will You Measure the Success of the Person in This Role?

Knowing what success looks like in the role you’re applying for will help you understand an employer’s expectations. For example, ask about past project timelines or the key performance indicators (KPIs). You may also want to ask how often you’ll get performance reviews to ensure the company doesn’t let good work go unnoticed—and unrewarded.


“Company A may have different metrics than Company B,” Amanda Royle, co-founder and personnel supervisor at Imgkits Studio, says. “Knowing which kind of metrics your future company is using will help you plan your strategy well … As they say, before entering the battlefield, know your game plan.”


Additionally, this question can help you gauge whether the role expectations are reasonable and leave room for a good work-life balance. Even the most exciting opportunity can take a toll on your well-being if you often have to work overtime.


The interviewer, in turn, may see this question as a signal that you’re determined and ambitious. Your potential employer wants a candidate who strives for success.

4. What Are the Company’s Plans for Development?

Ensuring the company has a plan for the future is another important factor to consider. With massive layoffs affecting many well-known companies in the tech sector, you want to make sure you don’t put your career in the hands of an employer that won’t be able to afford you a year later.


Ask about a company’s funding and vision for the near future to see how secure the employer is in their plans and how you can fit into them.


Plus, hiring managers are looking for applicants who will stick around long-term. So, showing interest in the company’s future sends the message that you care about where the company is going and the role you’ll have in getting it there.

5. What Do You Enjoy About Your Job?

Knowing other people’s experiences working at the same company or on the same team is essential when making decisions about your next job. This question turns the interview tables and makes the interviewer sell their working experience to you.


“While the role candidates apply for is important, it’s also essential for candidates to know if they’d enjoy working at a specific company,” Amaro says. “Candidates can gain a better insight into what it’s like to work for a company by asking the interviewers for an internal and personal perspective.”


You’re looking to see how your interviewer feels about their job and what they think about the company. Opportunities for advancement are another critical detail to elicit. If the answer leaves you unconvinced, it may be a red flag you shouldn’t ignore.


Learn what it’s like to work at JPMorgan Chase

The Bottom Line

While you can use these questions across interviews, make sure you come up with some specific to the company and the role you’re seeking. An interview is your opportunity to find out what the company and workplace are like, so take advantage of it. Plus, the hiring manager will appreciate your interest.


“Candidates arriving at an interview with good questions will definitely come across as more interested in the position and give a better impression to the interviewer,” Amaro says. “At the same time, asking questions can help candidates see if the position and company are the right fit for them and help them decide if it’s a job they want.”


Do you have an interview coming up? Prepare for these common interview questions asked by hiring managers across careers.



This article originally appeared on and was syndicated by

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Interview red flags you should watch out for


My friend Emma recently interviewed for a position with a company she’s always admired from afar. She showed up (virtually) excited, well-prepped and hoping for the best.


She called me right after the interview to debrief. But there was flatness where the excitement should’ve been. She sounded way more “meh” than “woohoo.”


“I’m still not sure what just happened,” she said. “They want me to meet with an executive panel next, but something about the experience is making me hesitate.”


Right now, we’re living in a buyers’ market—meaning companies are having to work twice as hard to attract talent, and if you indeed are a talent, you’ve got all the leverage. So, if you’re on the hunt for your next gig, you can—and absolutely should—be very choosy.


Of course, there’s a lot you won’t know about a company until you’re already inside it. But there are some signals you can keep an eye out for during the interview process. And if, like my friend, you feel your spidey sense tingling, definitely give it a listen.


Here are some red flags worth watching out for.


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Whoever is interviewing you—regardless of their level or title—should be showing up as an ambassador of the company’s brand.


People express energy in different ways; I’m not suggesting that you expect choreography and jazz hands. But I am saying that you deserve to feel like the interviewer wants to be there and is fully engaged in your conversation.


Have they shown up, whether in person or on-screen, calmly, with smiles, seeming to have time for you? Or do they seem anxious, frantic, racing around or exhausted?


Even in a virtual interview, you can watch for signals of focus, eye contact, and how calmly they’re breathing. One frantic person may be an exception. But if it seems like the norm, be wary.


Emma told me her interviewer seemed distracted and anxious—and was not-so-discreetly multi-tasking. Which left Emma feeling like a to-do needing to be handled rather than a talent to be courted. Not a good look for that company.


When I graduated from college, certain big companies were infamous for asking questions like, “How many dog hairs are there in the world?” or “How long would a piece of string need to be in order to circle the earth twice?”


Crazy, right? Granted, answering these questions well didn’t mean answering correctly. Because who could possibly know? These questions were designed to give the interviewer a glimpse into your thought process.


But also, let’s be honest: They were a little bit designed to make you sweat, to show the interviewer how you showed up under pressure.


The good news is that you don’t have to put up with that line of inquiry anymore. An interview should challenge you for sure, but also create a space in which you feel safe and can leave feeling good about yourself.


Pay attention to the nature of the questions you’re being asked. Do the questions feel designed to trip you up, or are they coming from a place of curiosity about your experience, your point of view, and your interests?


Be wary of a company that seems like it’s testing you rather than getting to know you.


In this day and age especially, an interview should feel like a dialog—you should have questions to answer, but also an invitation to pose your own.


Great companies understand this is your opportunity to get to know them as much as theirs to know you. So, pay attention to how much time the interviewer leaves for you to ask questions of them.


Emma told me that with two minutes left in their hour, her interviewer said, “Well, we’re just about out of time, but if you have a really quick question, I can try to answer it.”




You deserve to join a company that wants to know what’s on your mind as much as what value you can offer them. And candidly, if they’re a great employer, they should want every opportunity to showcase that.


Hold out for an interviewer that wants all of your questions about their culture, their leadership, their participation in the community, their employee affinity groups, and whatever else you prioritize.


These are great signals of a great experience to come.


Emma had a lot of questions! And this was a huge missed opportunity for the company.




When an interviewer references a colleague or a leader within, do they speak well or poorly of them? What kind of signals or body language do they give off?


Every company is filled with flawed people. But a willingness to highlight these flaws in an interview designed to attract you may signal a culture of disrespect or unhealthy competition.


Emma caught a couple of eye rolls as her interviewer touched on the work one of her colleagues was leading, and it was really off-putting to her.


You deserve to lean into a culture that is collaborative and collegial. Your colleagues will have flaws, but those should be yours to discover in time.


Don’t trust a company that won’t admit failure, whether individual or collective.


A company without failures to speak of is a company lacking either in honesty, or in creativity, risk tolerance, and a willingness to innovate. And we should all be looking for places that will grow, challenge, and ready us for the next-next thing.


So be sure you ask about a failure they’ve survived, big or small. They should be able to share an example. And it’s important to listen to how they describe it. Are they pointing fingers or embarrassed? Or can they highlight a lesson learned and a teamwork approach to righting the wrong?


If you’re on the hunt for your next professional move, remember that first impressions are critical. Make a great one yourself, but hold any company to the same standard. You deserve to land in a place that will delight you.


This article originally appeared on and was syndicated by


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