Bad (and Good) Questions to Ask in Your Job Interview

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Hopefully, most job candidates know they should ask questions in a job interview. As I and any hiring attorney will tell you, asking quality questions will help demonstrate to the employer that you understand -- and have genuine interest in -- the industry, their business model, and the role you're interviewing you would play within the law firm, corporate legal department, etc.

Failure to ask quality questions can suggest lack of research, tone deafnesses, or worse. 

According to a poll conducted by Accountemps of 400 U.S. workers and reported in "QUESTIONABLE QUESTIONS? Work Expectations, Salary Top of Mind for Candidates During Job Interviews," only 84% of job candidates ask questions in the job interview. Unfortunately, some of those questions were:

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These are, to put it mildly, not quality questions. Instead, Accountemps recommends questions like:

  1. What is a typical day like for someone in this position?
  2. Who was in the role before me, and why did they leave?
  3. What qualities do you think would make someone successful in this position?
  4. What do you see as the greatest opportunities for the company in the next several years?
  5. What do you like most about work here?

One of the nice things about Accountemps' recommendations is that they're open-ended questions that can help you, as the job candidate, get valuable insight into the corporate culture and what it takes to be successful within that organization. Save questions about compensation and benefits for after you have an offer -- though these particular four bad questions should be skipped altogether!