Job interviews can be a daunting experience. You've spent weeks researching the company, Googled every interview question under the sun and have even bought some new shoes. On the day, you feel like it's going smoothly and are thanking yourself for all of those hours you spent preparing your carefully thought out answers. After what feels like a lifetime, the interview seems to be drawing to a close, and you are getting ready to shake their hand and thank them for their time. Except, the interviewer then proceeds to ask you for your questions to which you both endure a painful 5 seconds of silence whilst you desperately search your brain for something intelligent to ask.
The above situation is unfortunately all too common amongst graduate interviews and can often result in an otherwise impressive candidate leaving a bad impression. Failing to prepare questions can make you look like you lack a genuine interest in the role, so think carefully about what you can take away from the interview. It's vital that you utilise these questions as a chance to suss out whether the job is really right for you, as the interview is as much about the employer as it is you.
Not sure what to ask? We've put together some interview question inspiration so you can fill that awkward silence and use it as a chance to impress the employer and score some serious brownie points.
This question will allow the hiring manager to go into much more detail about the role. Job descriptions are not always completely representative of what you'd be doing on an everyday basis, so use this as an opportunity to find out more and don't be afraid to ask the interviewer to elaborate if you're unsure about anything. If you are offered the job, you will have a better idea of what to expect when you start so you won't have any false expectations.
Asking this will show that you want to develop your skills and are striving to succeed in your job role. It will also tell you about the organisation of the role and will indicate if there is a rigid structure for development and progression at the company.
Some employers do take a while to get back to you, so asking this can give you a rough idea of when you should expect to hear back by, and can save you from obsessively checking your emails. It's also quite a neutral question to end on and is a good way to draw the interview to a close.
It's important to remember that an interview is a two-way street. People often think of the ball being in the interviewer's court entirely, but it's equally as important for the candidate to see if they'll flourish in their new job.
Michael H. Mann is a Certified Professional Landman with over 30 years of experience in the oil and gas industry. Michael was named Houston Association of Professional Landmen (HAPL) Outstanding Landman for 1998. He has served as President of the HAPL and Houston Association of Division Order Analysts (HADOA), and as Director of AAPL Region IV.