When you’re in the hot seat, there’s a good chance that your interviewer will turn the tables at some point and ask, “Do you have any questions for me?”
When you have the floor, you’ll want to take full advantage of the opportunity to show that you’ve done your homework and determine if the job is a good fit.
But it’s imperative that you put just as much thought into what you ask as you do your responses to their questions. That’s because your queries may reflect your knowledge of the company, work ethic, level of professionalism, and interest in the role.
“In the first interview, you’ll want to be sure to ask the right questions. Ask about the job and company; not questions that can come off as self-serving and give the impression you may not be a team player or be willing to give 100%,” Amy Hoover, president of the job board Talent Zoo, tells Business Insider.
“The sole purpose of the interview is to determine if you are a good fit for the company, and if it’s a good fit for you,” she says. “All the other issues and concerns should be addressed during negotiations after the job offer has been made.”
Here are 23 questions you’ll want to avoid during the first job interview, as they may do more harm than good:
Questions like this will make you look unprepared. To avoid that, never ask anything that can easily be answered with a Google search.
Hold off on the money talk.
'Candidates have to walk a thin line between gathering information they need about a company and assuming they are going to get the position,' Jesse Siegal, a senior managing director at The Execu|Search Group staffing firm, tells Business Insider.
Asking about money too early in the process sends the message that you're arrogant and rude.
Asking this question betrays a punch-the-clock mentality. It's better to go over details like this once you have the job in hand.
Planning your time off before you've even gotten the job sends the message that you're not committed to the work.
There's really no reason to ask this in the interview. Plus, it sends the wrong message.
The interviewer may wonder if you've had problems with colleagues in the past -- and they may even assume that you're difficult to work with.
It's better to save this question for the end of the process, when it's more clear that you'll receive a job offer.
'Often, companies post information about their benefits on their websites in order to attract candidates, so it may be possible to find this information without asking in an interview,' Siegal says.
This may tell the interviewer that money is the only thing you care about.
Don't try to make adjustments to the schedule before you've even been offered the job.
This one is even more telling to interviewers than simply asking about your hours, as it will almost exclusively be perceived as your refusal to do what it takes to get the job done.
This question will raise red flags -- something you definitely don't want to do in the interview.
This one says that you're not 100% focused on your work.
You should never bring gossip into a job interview. It's highly unprofessional.
It's not a good idea to get the interviewer thinking about firing you before they have even hired you.
'If you imply a woman is pregnant when she isn't, there is no recovery. It's a colossal insult,' Darlene Price, author of 'Well Said! Presentations and Conversations That Get Results,' tells Business Insider.
'Besides, this observation (whether true or false) is too personal to mention for a first time meeting,' she says.
This one puts the interviewer on the spot. If you really want feedback, wait until you get the offer or rejection, and then ask in an email what you did well or could have done better.
'Not asking questions can be just as bad, or worse, than asking terrible questions,' Deborah Shane, a career author, speaker, and media consultant, tells Business Insider. 'It can reveal a lot about your communication skills, personality, and confidence -- and it can leave the interviewer with a bad impression of you.'
Jacquelyn Smith contributed to a previous version of this article.
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