10 Things You Should Know Before You Leave A Job Interview

It’s happened to all of us: Consumed with preparing answers to every potential question, we don’t consider what we need to know before the interview’s close and lose a precious opportunity to gain valuable insight on a potential employer. But what should you ask? Fret not, we’ve made a list of the 10 things you should know before you shake hands and leave.

before you leave an interview

Before you walk out, ask yourself:

1. Do I Know If The New Hire Will Have The Opportunity To Train Or Meet With The Outgoing Employee?

If you’re offered the job, it will be helpful to have an understanding of what kind of background and instruction you’ll be receiving as you begin your new role. The employee may no longer be with the company, but asking the question could encourage your boss-to-be to set up a meeting. Even if the answer is no, you’ve demonstrated an interest in learning more about the company and the position.

2. Do I Know Why The Position Open?

Ideally, the person who last held the job—maybe even your interviewer!—received an internal promotion. What you really don’t want to hear is harsh criticism of the last person to fill the role. That kind of negativity could be a sign that anyone hired is doomed from the start.

3. Do I Know How Many People Have Held This Position In The Last Two Years?

If the answer is more than two in two, you should ask why the position has experienced such high turnover. If you hear more than 20 people (believe it or not, it’s happened) have held the job over the past two years, don’t ignore the warning signs.

4. Do I Know What A Typical Day Will Look Like For Me?

Just like knowing whether you’ll get training straight from the source will help you understand what level of instruction to expect, knowing whether or not the company has a good grasp of your day-to-day responsibilities will give you insight on their expectations of you and for the position.

5. Do I Know Some Of My Potential New Boss’s Pet Peeves?

Issues and behaviors that seem minor to you could loom large for your future manager. This gives you an opportunity to alter your behavior—and even your appearance—accordingly. Is the office dress code casual, but you see the boss is on the more formal side? You may want to model that behavior, letting her know you take the job—and her opinion—seriously.

6. Do I Know What Traits Or Work Habits They’re Looking For In An Ideal Candidate?

Your interviewer will describe the characteristics he believes are most important. This is a chance to show which of those traits you possess—it’s also a time for you to consider which qualities you’re missing. Be honest with yourself. Can you acquire the ones you don’t have and succeed in this position? Do you want to?

7. Do I know How Long The Hiring Process Takes?

There’s a reason this one’s on every list… It’s there because it’s one of the most important things to know. Some companies are on a fast track and expect a new worker in the door within two weeks of making an accepted offer. Others, especially government agencies, have multiple steps that can take anywhere from 60 to 90 days before you’re in your new position. Knowing the timeline will help you manage your expectations.

8. Do I Know What Next Steps Are And When They’ll Take Place?

If you’ve just completed a phone or video interview, or if you expect more than one face-to-face session, you need to be able to plan accordingly. If you’d like to take a half-day from your current job to avoid the stress of racing place to place, having a general idea of when next steps will occur helps you arrange your schedule and responsibilities accordingly.

9. Do I Have Everyone’s Contact Information?

Ask for cards, and double check spellings of names, email, and snail mail addresses for the thank you notes you’ll be sending within 24 hours of your interview.

10. Did I get In The Driver’s Seat For A Minute?

Ask your interviewer if she’s finished with her questions. Make sure you’ve asked all of yours. Now summarize your key selling points in a 60-second elevator pitch based on your conversation—something like, “As we’ve discussed, I’ve successfully directed several campaigns similar to those I’d be leading in this position.”

Now you can leave the interview feeling confident that you’ve paved the way for the next step in the process and a new job you’ll love!

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