Job Seeker Blog - Spark Hire

5 Questions Job Seekers Should NOT Ask in the Interview

5 Questions Job Seekers Should NOT Ask in the InterviewWhen interviewing for a new job, we all want to be successful and do well.  There are many tips that can be found on what to wear, how to respond to questions, and the type of questions to ask the manager.  However, sometimes it’s just as important to know the things we should NOT be doing in an interview. 

One way to impress the hiring manager during and interview is by asking the right kind of questions.  You’ve reviewed information and tips about the type of questions you should ask, but have you thought about what you should NOT ask?

 1. What does this company do?

You should always do your research before an interview.  Not knowing the basics of what the company does is never going to impress the hiring manager.  In fact, it will do the exact opposite.  Likewise, review the job description and make sure you have a basic  understanding of the position that you are interviewing for.

2. What is the pay?

Never ask this question during the first interview.  The purpose of the first interview is to shine through your background and experience, in addition to learn more about the company and position to ensure it’s a fit.  Typically, you have completed an application or had a discussion with a recruiter before the interview, answering questions surrounding your current compensation and expectations.  If this is the case, the hiring manager is aware of where you need to be.

 3. What are the hours?

When you start asking eager questions about the hours and work schedule in the first interview, this could cause the manager to question your ability to do what is needed to accurately complete the work.  Will you be the person who drops everything at five o’clock on the dot, regardless the progress made?

Unless there’s the possibility that you would be working “shift work” you should stay away from time related questions.  Other similar questions that you should avoid are:

  • How many breaks do you have and for how long?
  • Can I work from home?
  • Am I required to be in the office everyday?

4. What are the benefits?

Asking questions about benefits or paid time off in the initial interview can cause the manager to wonder if you are interested in the actual opportunity itself.  Will you be more concerned about being outside of the office or taking sick days?  Again, it’s best to stay away from any compensation or benefit questions in the first interview.

 5. What is the timeline of promotion?

Concentrate on the position you are applying to during the interview.  Of course, most of us are eager to be successful and progress our careers.  However, by asking questions about promotions during the initial interview process, you are sending a message to the manager that you may not truly be interested in the position you are interviewing for.

Remember, your first interview is a time to show your expertise and skills, as well as learn more about the company and position.  Stick to questions related to the company and the job responsibilities.  By doing this, you will leave the manager with a better impression versus if you ask questions about compensation, benefits, hours, and promotion opportunities.

What are some questions you typically avoid in the first interview?  Share your suggestions in the comments below.

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Julia Weeks

Julia is a skilled Recruiter with over 8 years of experience in sourcing, interviewing, and hiring within many industries globally. She works closely with hiring managers and job seekers to understand needs and desires, while offering guidance and ensuring the right fit. When not recruiting or writing, Julia enjoys spending time outside cycling, taking her dog for walks, or honing her sailing skills.

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