Hi all,

BLUF: What do you think of these three questions that this LinkedIn author recommends candidates should ask in interviews?

Like many of you, I purchased the Interview Series and found the advice given very helpful -- certainly didn't disappoint. I particularly liked the suggestions to prepare for the opportunity to ask questions in interviews. As someone who has interviewed roughly as often as I've been interviewed, I can totally confirm such questions are a great opportunity to stand out (either way, positive or negative...).

I just came across a LinkedIn article on the subject. The author recommends three particular questions:

  • What qualities are you looking for in the person you are hoping to appoint?
  • What scope is there for personal development at your company?
  • Is there anything you have seen in the other people on the shortlist that you have not seen in me?

The article also recommends to "ask as many questions as the interviewer does" (raising my eyebrows).

What do you think of this guidance?

Best regards


mattpalmer's picture

I think the first two of those questions are quite reasonable (and I'd provide a lot of useful information in the answers to them).  The third question, though... well, it's *very* much like the "Sales close" interview question ("Is there anything you've seen so far that would prevent you from giving me the offer?") and, to be frank, I hate it.  The answer I'd have in my mind would be, "Yeah, the ability to avoid asking idiot questions", and I'd almost certainly decline to answer the question on a vague basis of "confidentiality" or some such.

That being said, just because I hate the question, doesn't mean it wouldn't be effective (I loathe the "Sales close" question, too, but I've no doubt it's at least partially effective).  Many people have a great deal of trouble declining to answer a question, and so you'd likely get some useful information out of it.  Just don't try it on me...

lisas2's picture

 on #1 - I'd react poorly to that. I think it can come off as "tell me what you want me to tell you" - an attempt by the candidate to manipulate me. I understand the concept and intent behind the advice, I'm just sharing how it would come off to me. There's just no good time to ask it either. If you ask it first, then I really see it as a clumsy attempt by you to skew your answers to fit. It also makes me wonder if you read the job description at all. If you ask it last, then you haven't picked up on any of my questions or probes to your responses. 

#3 - I agree with Matt ^^  - I hate the Sales Close in all permutations 


Today, after 30-40 minutes of a phone interview, when I asked if there were any questions for me I got "What do you think about me and my skills?" 

Thank goodness lack of video hid my expression :)