It's asked all the time - it’s the universal way to wrap up an interview. The last question an interviewer will almost always ask is, “Do you have any other questions for me?”
Often, that question is answered with “No, I think we’ve answered most of my questions.” Or, “No, someone answered them all earlier.” Or simply, “No.”
The constant here is that every single person that answers that question with some form of “No” misses a great opportunity to reclaim the interview. Because as much as the interviewer is interviewing you, you’re also interviewing them.
In any interview, you want to make sure that the role you’re applying for, or the company looking to hire you, aligns with what you want out of your next career. “Do you have any more questions,” is your opportunity to turn the tables and become the interviewer, proving that not only have you done your research, but also that you have the guts to ask some of the tougher questions, the ones that are going to leave that lasting impression.
When you’ve exhausted all the technical and logistic questions you might have about the role, the company, the culture, etc., there’s always a few final questions that are left unanswered. Here are three questions to keep in your back pocket when you find yourself at your next interview.
- I’m really interested in this role and I’m sure you have other candidates. Is there anything in my experience/qualifications that you feel I might be missing?
Asking this questions gives you a chance to highlight something you might not have covered during the interview process. It also gives you the opportunity to remove any misunderstandings about your experience or something that might not have seemed relevant to include in your resume. If the interviewer highlights something in particular, you can either answer that question at that time or in a follow-up thank you note.
If you don’t have experience with what they brought up, you should include examples of your willingness to learn those skills you might be missing, or even show where you have faced similar challenges and have overcome them in your previous experiences. If they answer with, “I don’t see anything missing,” you know you’re checking off many of the boxes that qualify you for the role, and that’s a great sign.
- What will be the biggest challenge for this role?
Asking this gives you an opportunity to highlight any experience that you might have that dealt with the types of challenges they mention. Interviewers love to hear concrete examples, that’s why behavioral questions, also known as situational questions, have become more and more popular in interviews.
At the very least, knowing the challenges of the job you’re applying for allows you to follow up thoughtfully in your thank you note/email on how you might tackle that kind of challenge, or how you might be able to solve the issue. You will show that you are thinking strategically and what you can add to their business.
- Besides checking all the must-haves in the job posting, what else are you looking for in this candidate?
Asking this question, once again, gives you an opportunity to showcase any qualifications you might have that coincide with their ideal candidate. Just like the above examples, answer in person during the interview or with the thank you note and follow up that you send after the interview. Surprisingly, many don’t bother with this simple action. It’s another opportunity to check in, show your continued interest and answer thoughtfully the questions you posed above during the interview. Do not underestimate the power of a thank you email.
Are you sensing a theme here? What should be clear to you by now is that, asking these questions gives you insight into how you can make yourself stand out from the rest. You will quickly get some understanding into whether or not the interviewer thinks you are a strong candidate, what you might be missing, and gives you an opportunity to highlight how and why you’re the best candidate for the job. Don’t shy away from answering “Do you have any more questions,” because it’s those answers that just might land you the job.