500 Questions: Questions You Ask, Part 2

What is your organizational mission?

This question indicates a central desire to make a contribution and to have your work make a difference. If this is important to you, your career happiness will be closely tied to the organization’s mission and values.

What is the timetable for filling this position? When would you need me to start?

The longer the job has been open and the tighter the time frame for filling it, the better your leverage. That can also be determined by asking about a possible start date.

What is a typical week like?

With this question you are making it clear to your interviewer that you are interested in the reality of life on the job and that you are already aware of what that reality might be.

What expansion is planned for this department, division, or facility?

For those concerned about career growth, a healthy company is mandatory. For those concerned about stability of employment, the same applies. This question implies that you’re an achievement-oriented individual looking for a company in which you can build a long-term career.

What are the major responsibilities of this position?

This question gives you an opportunity to seek additional information about the position and what is expected of you if hired. This also allows the interviewer to differentiate you from the competition.

What are some of the most difficult problems I’d face in this position?

If you are asking this kind of question, you are demonstrating that you want to solve seemingly insoluble problems, win out over tough competitors, and overcome difficult obstacles.

To what extent are the functions of the department recognized as important and worthy of review by upper management?

If upper management takes an interest in the functions of your work group, rest assured that you are in a visible position for recognition and reward.