Good Questions to Ask an Interviewee in 2021

TOP QUESTIONS TO ASK JOB APPLICANTS DURING INTERVIEWS

In this article we cover list of good questions to ask an interviewee.

During an interview session, a hiring manager is expected to ask the job applicant some questions in order to know more about the candidate. This information will let the hiring manager know how relevant the individual would be in the organization. 

A job Interview is a platform where the hiring manager gets more information about the candidate. You get to see if he is qualified for the job or not, if he has the skills needed for the role or if the candidate is most likely the type that needs to learn on the job. The applicant’s replies will determine his success as these questions will let the HR manager know more about the candidate.

It is a well-known fact that when the best candidate is hired, there will be a free flow of operations in the organization and this is only possible when the hiring manager asks the right questions. 

These interview questions fall under two categories which are General-job questions and Job-Specific questions.

The General questions will give the hiring manager an insight into the candidate’s attitude to work, his skills, and how well he relates with people while the job-specific questions will let the hiring manager know about the candidate’s skills strength and exposure in relation to the job position he is applying for.

Here are some general job questions to ask job applicants during an interview. These questions were gathered from experienced hiring managers, each question can be asked in different formats but require similar ideas as response.

  1. Tell me about yourself
  2. What motivates you to work?
  3. How well do you communicate with people?
  4. What kind of environment do you enjoy working in?
  5. What are your strengths?
  6. What are your weaknesses?
  7. What qualifications do you possess?
  8. How did you handle working under pressure?
  9. What are your interests?
  10. What is your duty in the organization you work with?
  11. Are you a good team player?
  12. How do you motivate unwilling team members?
  13. Tell me about your latest achievement
  14. What did you do after a failed project?
  15. Tell me about your previous work experience

However, Job-specific questions are a little bit different from the general job questions. Job-specific questions are major questions that relate to the job role the applicant is vying for. Unlike the general job questions, the interviewer asks questions in relation to the organization and the candidate’s potential position in the company. The applicant is expected to answer these questions by making reference to the organization. Here are some of the questions which most hiring managers ask job applicants during an interview to know if the candidate fits into the vacant position.

  1. What do you know about this organization?
  2. What inspired you to apply for this vacancy?
  3. Why do you want to leave your former job/why did you leave your previous job?
  4. What made you believe that you are the right candidate for this job?
  5. Where do you see yourself in the next five years?
  6. What challenges do you expect to face in this position?
  7. Can you work under pressure in this position?
  8. What are your salary expectations?
  9. What are your expected results in this position?
  10. Do you have any question to ask us?

Responses are expected to be based on the job role or organization.

It simply means the interviewer is expected to know the perfect skill or qualification for the job while the interviewer is expected to come up with answers in line with what the company requires.

Here is a tip for the interviewed, make sure you impress your interviewer.

These questions sound easy on the surface look but a deeper thought would make you realize that a regular response to these questions could make a job applicant fail the job interview and miss his chances of getting a job in the organization.

If the hiring manager also fails to understand the kind of response required for these questions could lead to the failure of the company on the long run because the wrong candidate could be given the job.

Here are the possible means to identify responses to the General-Job questions listed above. However, it should be noted that that replies may differ in respect to organizational culture but they are expected to have similar ideas.

Tell me about yourself

This question could sound weird because the interviewer has the applicant’s CV in front of him but he is still asking him to talk about himself. This question is very important and also one of the most common questions interviewers ask. The interviewer knows the job applicants with his CV but they want him to justify the contents of his CV and also discuss himself by indicating top skills, experience, and qualifications that make him qualified for this job. No one needs information about his personal details in this aspect.

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All the same, as an interviewer, while the applicant is talking about himself, you need to watch out for those points he would highlight in order to know if the details about him can fit into the job role.  The answer is meant to be brief and the applicant is expected to be bold when talking about himself.

What motivates you to work?

This question is just to understand the applicant. It is simply a question that gives the interview spy information to know if the applicant’s motivation is related to that of the organization. The applicant’s motivation should be aligned with the company’s culture and vision. The response to this question is expected to come with more explanation of how the applicant is motivated by a particular result or effect.

How well do you communicate with people?

Even if the role is not a marketing role, the applicant is expected to know how to communicate with people because as a staff, you are an ambassador of the company. The applicant must confirm that he knows how to communicate with people. He is to tell of his language proficiency, his experience with other kinds of people, how he relates with people from other departments, and how he carried out a project with people from different departments or other walks of life.

What kind of environment do you enjoy working in?

The applicant is expected to explain this statement in a way that shows that he can work with the structures and cultures of the organization. The applicant is expected to have carried out research about the company before the interview.

His response to this question is expected to be in line with the kind of environment in which the organization operates in. These include working hours, work ethics, the kind of employment, and the kind of people who work in the company. The individual is expected to make reference to any quality which the company possesses while answering this question.

Why are you interested in working for us?

If he says to have money, raise a red flag. The applicant must be ready to give convincing reasons why his skills, experience, or qualification are relevant to the organization. He is also expected to convince you that he is bothered about making a positive change in your organization or enjoys the environment rather.

What are your strengths?

This is a very common question which most interviewers ask because they want to know if the applicant has the capability to carry out this job. He is expected to highlight his strength in relation to what the company requires. This is to know if the applicant’s competencies and experiences are relevant for the vacant position.

What are your weaknesses?

The applicant must have at least one weakness because no one is perfect. Interviewers want to know if the individual is self-aware of his flaws and ready to improve them. The applicant is expected to describe weakness and give explanations on how he is working to overcome it. This weakness must be reasonable, must show that improvements being carried out are also going to have a positive impact on the organization. If the applicant talks of weakness that will restrict his ability to work in the organization, it shows he is not a good fit for the position. If he has so many weaknesses, he should be avoided.

What qualifications do you possess?

This question is very straightforward, however; you should only focus on the relevant qualifications needed for the job. An applicant could be a medical doctor but if he decides to change his career prospects, information about his medical qualifications might not even be needed but that of the new career which is relevant to your available vacancy will be considered.

What are your interests?

This question is very tricky. The applicant could have several interests but he must highlights interest that relates to the organization and his job role. In this aspect, his interest must be related to that of the position he is vying for. If he only says things outside of the job role, that is to show that in the long run, he might not have the motivation to carry out his duties properly because he had no interest in the position right from the start.

What is your duty in the organization you work with?

This question is just to give you an insight into what kind of job he has been exposed to and what he must have learned while on that job which can be of great use in this new position. The applicant is expected to lay emphasis on his duties and experience which can help him in his new job.

Are you a good team player?

The applicant is not expected to stop by saying “Yes! I am a team player”. He is to give instances where he worked with other people in a team, his role in the team, and his success story. This will let you know how active he will be when he is working on a project with his team.

How do you motivate unwilling team members?

He is to give an instance of how he motivated a team member who must have lost all hope in a project or is simply not interested in a particular project. The applicant’s response must be realistic. His response will give detailed information about how he relates to other people.

Tell me about your latest achievement

As an interviewer, you should be able to detect if he is giving false stories of achievements because his achievement must show his strengths which are related to his job role. If his achievement has nothing related to his strengths or interest, it might show that he has not put most of his key skills into use.

What did you do after a failed project?

This question will let you know how he handles defeat. In this situation, he tells you how he got back to his feet to correct the wrongs or how he decided to go about being saddened by it. However, the former is a good choice, the steps which the applicant took after the defeat should be realistic and workable.

Tell me about your previous work experience?

  • The applicant is expected to talk about his work experience which includes his job role, what he learned on the job, and his success stories on the job. His volunteering experience is also relevant.
  • For the Job- Specific questions, the applicant is expected to have researched the company. This will make the hiring manager know that he is prepared for the interview and also interested in the role. These are possible ways to detect the answers to these questions.

What do you know about this organization?

You as an interviewer know that the applicant must have made his own research about the company but just knowing that is not enough, You need to be sure that he truly researched. This is because you want to know if he understands his potential position and what value the company has to offer. His response will let you know how much the applicant understands the concept of the company.

What inspired you to apply for this vacancy?

In another format, “Why did you apply for this role?” His response will let you know if he is truly interested in the position and understand the purpose of the position he is applying to. He is to discuss his potential duties and highlight his expected result.

Why do you want to leave your current job/why did you leave your previous job?

This question will let you know what can lead to him leaving your organization if he eventually qualifies however, he is not expected to make us of derogatory statements to describe his previous company

What made you believe that you are the right candidate for this job?

Here, the applicant is expected to give workable reasons why he is better than every other candidate who applied to that same role. He is to give details of his qualifications, experiences strengths, and interests. This question is more of a debate with only one debater.

Where do you see yourself in the next five years?

His response will let you know if he is all about position and class or if he is all about making a positive impact in the organization. The applicant is not expected to say that he sees himself as a manager instead, it would be more comforting if he says he sees himself growing in this field, being a part of so many success stories in the organization, and also being the best at his job.

What challenges do you expect to face in this position?

Challenges must be expected. He needs to base his answers on the fact that he is liable to face challenges. However, as the interviewer, you are to take note of the situation he highlights as challenges and also understand how he plans to deal with the situation.

Can you work under pressure in this position?

You are only interested in knowing how he handles pressure while carrying out a project. You also get to know how he attends to his team members when he is being pressurized. 

What are your salary expectations?

This is important to know too. This will make you know how much he intends to earn a salary in this position. You would be able to make a decision about how much to pay him after an interview.

What are your expected results in this position?

This question will let you know if he has positive plans for the organization through his office. This will let you know if he is interested in the growth and development of the organization and how he intends to contribute to it.

Do you have any questions to ask us?

The applicant is expected to ask the interviewer any question in relation to the role. His question will help the interviewer know his interest in the company, and also access his critical thinking.

There are many more questions that could be asked but these are the most common questions most interviewers ask. They can be asked in a different formats but they still mean the same thing.

Also read: Nurse practitioner job interview questions and answers

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