Friday, December 1, 2023

What Not To Ask In An Interview

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NEVER Ask These Questions in a Job Interview

It sounds fairly straightforward, but how often have you got stressed out before an interview because you didnt know how to find the office, or you didnt know where to park? Or you werent aware of the rigorous security process youd have to follow when entering a building? Literally ALL of these situations, which can massively contribute to stress and anxiety are nonexistent because youre already in the building!

Do You Have Any Outstanding Debt

Employers have to have permission before asking about your credit history. Similar to a criminal background history, they can’t disqualify you from employment unless it directly affects your ability to perform the position you’re interviewing for.

Furthermore, they can’t ask you how well you balance your personal finances or inquire about you owning property.

Dealing With The Fallout If Youre Unsuccessful

If youre not successful in securing an internal role, you will need to make sure that the aftermath is dealt with appropriately. Firstly, your current manager will now have an awareness that you are open to other positions. For this reason, you need to make sure you deal with this appropriately by confirming that youre happy in the department and your current role.

You might also now have to deal with a colleague/friend being successful in the role that you wanted, so you need to ensure youre not too bitter. Aside from all of this, you might also feel that, now you have set your mind on another role, you might not feel 100% happy in your current one. Address these feelings and ensure you are confident about them before you do anything hasty like leave, for example.

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How Many Sickness Days Did You Take In Your Last Period Of Employment

Whether the employer asks about sickness, health, or disabilities subjects like these should always be avoided at an interview.

The only time an employer can ask about this is if its to establish whether an applicant needs an assessment to determine their suitability for the job, or to determine whether adjustments need to be made in order to accommodate a candidates needs .

Once a position has been offered, the employer can make enquiries into health, but only if these relate to your ability to carry out the role effectively.

For more information, you can refer to the Equality Act .

How you could answer: Sickness was not a problem in my previous role

What they could ask: Do you have any specific requirements in order to perform this job effectively?

Negativity About A Previous Employer Or Job

See some of the questions that should NOT be asked in an ...

The interviewer may ask you questions like “Why are you looking for a new job?” or “What didn’t you like about your previous positions?” Answering these types of questions in a manner that avoids saying anything negative about your previous employer or the job can show your ability to remain professional and positive regardless of the situation.

Positive answers to these questions can also give the interviewer confidence that you will be a good addition to their company’s culture and that you probably wouldn’t say anything negative about them in the future either. When answering questions about your previous employer, try to focus on things the position you are applying to has to offer that your previous employer wasn’t able to offer.

Example:“While I have enjoyed my time in my current position, I am really looking to apply the skills and experience I have gained in my role over the last five years to a supervisory position where I can help others grow in their success. Unfortunately, my current employer does not have any supervisory positions available and doesn’t expect any to become available soon.”

Related:How To Explain Your Reasons for Leaving a Job

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Questions To Ask In An Interview

Because getting the job isnt just about your answers.

The central purpose of a job interview is hardly a mystery from an employers perspective: its to figure out whether or not a prospective job candidate is the right fit for the job.

However, thats not all there is to it. From an employees perspective, the job interview is about more than what the job entails it is also one of the best if not the very best times to decide whether or not the company at which he or she is interviewing is a good fit for them.

After all, just because someone offers you a job doesnt mean you have to take it. The interview process is very much a two-way street, and at the end of that street may well be a great new position, or, if youll permit us to extend the metaphor, it might be a fork in the road at which you and the company part ways.

Questions Not To Ask In An Interview

When an interviewer asks you if you have any questions during a job interview, this is your opportunity to do three important things:

1. Collect information about the job and the employer that is important to you the things that will help you determine whether or not you will accept a job offer .

2. Demonstrate to the interviewer that you have done some research about them that you are actually interested in the job, not just wasting time.

3. Demonstrate that you are a good fit for the job and for the organization and would be an asset, if they can convince you to accept a job offer.

Read 50+ Questions to Ask in a Job Interview for suggestions on good questions to ask.

Also Check: How To Prepare For A Substitute Teacher Interview

Seven Things To Never Ask About During A Job Interview

With all of the advice available for job seekers online, you might think it should be a cinch to get the job you want. Unfortunately, not all of the job-seeking tips you find out there are practical. Many conventional notions about what to do or say in an interview are outdated some can even harm your chances of landing the opportunity.

From a hiring managers perspective, the various types of unacceptable questions job seekers ask can range from irrelevant to alarming. Of course, most interviewers wont address this issue, so job seekers continue to ask them, leading to further rejection. To help, seven leaders from Forbes Coaches Council weigh in on things theyve heard job seekers ask about in interviews that likely ended up costing them a shot at the job.

Forbes Coaches Council members share things job seekers should never ask about during the interview stage.

1. Paid Time Off And Work-Life Balance

Many employers publicly tout their work-life balance, paid time off and other lifestyle perks, but you should tread carefully when asking about these. An unsympathetic interviewer may perceive that you are planning to take time off before even starting. A better approach is to ask questions about workplace culture and expectations so that you can build your own picture of the situation. – Scott Singer, Insider Career Strategies

2. Compensation Or Salary

3. Things You Already Know

Dont: Ask When Youll Get A Raise

Interviewer Technique – How not to conduct an interview

While its okay to communicate that you hope to work for the company youre interviewing with for a long time, Bentsi-Enchill says questions that are framed as if you already have the job particularly asking when you can expect an increase in pay can leave a hiring manager with a bad impression. Even if its not your intention, asking about raises can come off as arrogant, especially if its early on in the interview, he explains.

Your best bet is to stick to inquiries that make it clear that youre committed to excelling at the job. Ask for examples of what success would look like in the role that youre interviewing for to demonstrate your desire to make an impact, Bentsi-Enchill advises.

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Interview Question #: What Do The First 90

This question will reveal what is expected of you in terms of accomplishments. Generally, the first 90-days are still a learning period, so how recruiters answer this question can reveal how heavy of a workload will be expected. Also, asking this question will allow you to highlight or reinforce any qualifications you have which could assist in meeting these goals.

Make Natural Transitions Between Questions

Having a list of interview questions to ask is good practice, but it has an inherent difficulty: it might make the interview seem more robotic and inflexible.

For example, imagine youre listening to a candidates answer. When they finish talking, you may suddenly feel awkward, so you nod and say something akin to OK, interesting and then you move on to the next question. This isnt how a natural conversation would flow, and it might make the experience less pleasant for the candidate .

Read Also: What To Do Before An Interview

Interview Question #: What Career Development Opportunities Would I Have With The Company

Entry-level interviewers may not be as concerned as mid-level or senior interviewers with developmental and growth opportunities, depending on your career goals. How the company answers this question will tell you how much value is placed on employees. Asking this question will show recruiters and hiring managers you are interested in a long-term position where you can not only help the company grow, but work on your skills, as well.

What Questions Might You Be Asked In An Internal Interview

Questions Not Allowed To Ask In A Job Interview

Its likely you will be asked a host of questions about your skills and experience, but there may also be some unique questions that would only be asked in an internal interview situation. Ive listed some of these below. Make sure you think about the answers to these questions and take them with you, just in case!

  • Why do you want to leave your current role/department?
  • What skills / experience make you think you will be suitable for this role?
  • What do you like about working for this company?
  • What has been your biggest achievement at this company?
  • What do you know about this role / department?

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Interview Question #: How Would You Describe The Company Culture

Asking about the workplace culture will tell you about the atmosphere you could be entering. If you are a talkative, energetic employee, you wouldn’t be a good fit for a company where there is minimal interaction or communication other than about work. If you feel the culture is a good fit, you can express your desire and enthusiasm for potentially working in it.

Bad Impression: You Are More Interested In Raises And Vacations Than The Job

These are important questions you need answered before you accept a job offer, but asking them too early in the process makes you look more interested in the salary and benefits than in the job:

  • How soon can I get a raise?
  • How much paid vacation time would I get?
  • How soon can I take a vacation after I start work?
  • How many paid personal and/or sick days are allowed?
  • Will you pay for training or an advanced degree for me?
  • What other benefits do you provide?

Save these selfish questions until you are negotiating the job offer.

EXCEPTION: If the interviewer presses you for your current salary or your salary expectations, as they often do, tell them that your salary requirements would depend on other aspects of the job like raises, vacation time, training, etc

Also Check: What Are Questions That Are Asked In Interviews

What Would You Do If A Penguin With A Sombrero Walked In The Front Door

Some hiring managers like to ask these fun and creative questions they found on the internet. Please don’t. Unless you’re in the business of zoo animal fiestas, there is no answer to this question that will help you evaluate the candidate.

Keep your questions relevant to the job. Don’t try to pry into personality. Unless you’re a trained psychologist, you won’t even know how to interpret the candidate’s answers. Ask about knowledge, skills, and abilities instead.

Asking The Right Questions

10 Things to Never Say in an Interview | Interview Tips

Every job seeker should ask thoughtful and probing questions at the end of their interview. Its your best chance to learn more about the job and the company. But, knowing what questions not to ask in an interview, or which ones to approach with extra care, will help you avoid any missteps and hopefully get you through to the next interview and a job offer.

For more tips like these, sign up for our newsletters. Youll get the best articles and resources, fresh job postings, information about upcoming events, and more delivered right to your inbox.

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When Was The Last Time You Used Illegal Drugs

It’s illegal for employers to ask you about past drug addiction, but they can ask you if you’re currently using illegal drugs.

A person who is currently using drugs is not protected under ADA.

For example, an employer may ask you: Do you currently use illegal drugs? What illegal drugs have you used in the last six months?

More Might Be Expected Of You

Contrary to popular belief, during an internal interview, the hiring manager will probably be expecting much more from you than any Tom, Dick or Harry that walks in from the street. You work at the company, you know the values, you might even half know the role already. Their expectations of you are likely to be high, so you need to bring your A-game.

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Questions You Should Never Ask During A Job Interview And What To Ask Instead

Whether you realize it or not, the kinds of questions you ask a potential employer during a job interview can reveal a lot about you as a candidate. First impressions matter, especially in job interviews, says New York City-based psychologist and career coach Cicely Horsham-Brathwaite, Ph.D. Asking the right questions can demonstrate to an interviewer that you have thought deeply about the role and the organization where you hope to work.

While some questions can help convey your commitment to landing the role, Nii Ato Bentsi-Enchill, a career coach and the founder of Avenir Careers, says that certain inquiries can have the opposite effect during a job interview. Asking the right questions can showcase your value and interest in the position, while the wrong ones could cause them to question your attentiveness, agenda, and even your character, he says.

Curious what questions experts say you should scratch off your list at your next job interview? Here are five inquiries career coaches and recruiters say you should avoid and what you should ask instead.

Whats The Nightlife Like

10 Interview Questions You Shouldn

For some of us, the social aspect of a company is an important part of our working lives.

However, as the old adage goes, theres a time and a place for everything. And the time for asking about the best places to go out in the area is not during your first interview.

Finding out more about the team or asking an open-ended question about company culture is fine, but let any other social aspects come up naturally when you have the job.

What you should be asking: How many other people are there in the team? Whats the best thing about the company culture?

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Did I Get The Job

This question puts employers on the spot and makes you appear impatient. Instead, you could ask for more information on the next step in the hiring process. For example, you can ask, “Do you generally do multiple rounds of interviews with job candidates?” However, if they are interested in you, most employers will give you this information before the end of the interview.

What Is The Worst Thing About Working Here

Again, avoid negativityâin life, but especially in the interview. Every workplace has its issues, but asking the interviewer to criticize the workplace can add a negative element to the interview that impacts their perception of you as a candidate. Pose questions in a way that invites information and challenge, rather than drawing out criticism and charging the interview with awkward conversation. Remember, hiring you should be seen as adding a positive change to the workplace.

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Interview Questions You Can’t Ask And 30 Legal Alternatives

In every job interview, the goal is to obtain important information while building a friendly rapport with the candidate. But some questions are just a little too friendly. Protect yourself and your company from legal trouble and embarrassment by avoiding the wrong questions while still getting to the root of the concern behind the question. Read on for 30 ways to turn litigious questions into insightful, legal alternatives.


Certainly, you want to be sure that a candidate can legally work for you, but it’s important to be careful how you ask. These questions address citizenship, language and other touchy subjects.

  • What you can’t ask: Are you a U.S. citizen?

    Although this seems like the simplest and most direct way to find out if an interviewee is legally able to work for your company, it’s hands-off. Rather than inquiring about citizenship, question whether or not the candidate is authorized for work.

    What to ask instead: Are you authorized to work in the U.S.?

  • What you can’t ask: What is your native tongue?

    Finding out about a candidate’s native language may seem like a good way to find out about their fluency, but you may offend applicants that are sensitive to common assumptions about their language. Additionally, as an employer, it’s not your concern how the applicant attained fluency in a language just that they are fluent.

    What to ask instead: What languages do you read, speak or write fluently?

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