Growing up in a household where my mother, an accomplished scientist, often emphasized the value of curiosity, I remember her sage advice: "Curiosity is a sign of intelligence," she would say. She emphasized that by asking good questions, you not only demonstrate your intelligence but also convey your genuine interest.
This lesson resonates in the context of job interviews. Your ability to inquire about the company, its mission, and its culture can set you apart and guide you toward making the right career choices and landing a good opportunity.
When you embark on a job search, it's not merely about finding any job; it's about discovering the right job that aligns with your values, goals, and ambitions. To achieve this, you must delve beyond the surface and ask questions that matter.
Asking thoughtful questions during interviews serves multiple purposes:
- Demonstrating Genuine Interest: Your curiosity about the company and role reveals your sincere desire to join their team. It reflects your commitment to finding a perfect match for your skills and values.
- Gathering Critical Information: Beyond impressing the interviewer, your questions provide insights into the organization, aiding you in evaluating if it aligns with your career path.
- Strengthening Your Candidacy: Thoughtful questions set you apart as a prepared and engaged candidate, leaving a lasting impression that can lead to fruitful conversations.
So, what should you ask about?
- The company’s mission and its core values. This will help you understand the company’s guiding principles.
- Short-term and long-term goals. This will help you ensure that your aspirations are consistent with the organization’s strategic direction.
- Company culture. Hiring managers may consider cultural fit when making hiring decisions. By asking about culture, you demonstrate your interest in being a key addition to the team and your commitment to aligning with its values.
Asking questions helps you create an effective narrative and a picture of your genuine interest. Here are a few tips to apply when forming your questions: 1) Reference something positive about the company or the role that resonated with you during research. 2) Show your eagerness to learn more about an aspect of the company or the role. 3) Connect the information you’re looking for to how it aligns with your future in the company.
This approach helps you gather information, of course. But it also creates an impression as a candidate genuinely invested in the company’s mission.
Just as my mother’s wisdom guided my path, asking thoughtful questions can guide yours. It helps you decide whether or not the workplace suits your career goals and preferences. It may well be the method you use to gauge your potential for fulfillment in the job.
If you need more assistance preparing for your next interview, or help preparing the resume to get you that interview, Shimmering Careers offers a variety of resume, cover letter, and coaching packages to help you find the job that fits you.