Your dream Company called for for an interview. You are so excited, you prepare, arrive early and put your best foot forward. But is that all you have to do? Towards the end of the session, candidates are often asked if they have questions. When you are given this opportunity, take it! Here are three questions to ask your prospective employer to give you a glimpse of their culture. As they qualify your skills to fit their needs, also make your own decision based on work environment and Company culture that you want.
Sometimes, employees can be overwhelmed and overjoyed at the prospect of a new job that they seem to forget that the interview process is as much their opportunity to ask questions and have a deeper knowledge of the Company.
Chocolate coated candies. Is something new and colorful always the best way to go?
I have a close friend, let’s call him Ben. The first time he told me he’s had 32 jobs, my jaw dropped. Literally. It’s like he started working since birth! He’s not old, let me tell you. He is very intelligent, very insightful, and very loyal among his many other great qualities. Any Company would be lucky to employ him. I’m not exaggerating any of these. He’s not a bad performer, not a bad person, but why so many Companies in a matter of about 13 years?
Ben’s previous Companies did not meet his basic requirements – great Company culture, actual nature of work that’s truly aligned to his interests and strengths and a friendly work environment. Once he got all these checked, he stayed. Luckily, he found all these in his current Company.
Ben is in us at one point or another. Yes, it happens but what can we do within our control to try and avoid being in the wrong place at the wrong time?
We can start by asking questions during the interview stage. This is not being proud or snub, simply being interested in your next “home”. Afterall, majority of your waking hours would be spent in the office. Right? Here are three questions to ask your prospective employer to help get you started.
Here are my top three questions that interviewees should ask their prospective employers:
Question to Ask Your Prospective Employer #1: Why did they decide to hire externally?
This is especially true from middle levels and up. This gives you a glimpse of how serious they are when it comes to succession planning and employee development. All employees have a stake when it comes to development but it has to be in a supportive environment. This is what you want to find out.
Question to Ask Your Prospective Employer #2:
What usually happens in the first few months of the employee’s tenure?
Onboarding is as important as the primary years in a child’s education. It sets the tone and builds the foundation. Does the Company have a solid onboarding plan? Are you expected to hit the ground running from day 1? Is it realistic? You can assess whether you are being set-up to succeed or otherwise.
By the way, be prepared to answer this question likewise. In your first few months with them, what do you see yourself doing? What do you plan to accomplish? This is especially true for leadership roles.
Question to Ask Your Prospective Employer #3:
What is the Company culture like?
There are many possible answers to this question. Here numbers can be your ally. What is the department’s attrition rate? What is their engagement index? How many people programs are in place? Gives you a good gauge of what you are (or not) getting yourself into. [UPDATE: Now that we are all going through and the pandemic, it is also best to ask what programs they rolled out or changes they made in response to COVID19.]
Before anything else, remember to do research before going to the interview. You may want to look into their Company page, their stocks, their values, etc.
Be open before making a decision. Sometimes, a leap is the best choice, other times staying where you are is your best move.
I hope that you find these three questions to ask your prospective employer helpful in your job-hunt journey. All the best!