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Don’t Ask These 4 Questions at Your Next Job Interview

You may have been told, perhaps in a classroom setting, that there is no such thing as a silly question. However, when it comes to interviewing for a new job, that is just not the case. Some inquiries could even cost you a job offer. So, before heading to your next interview, take a look at these interview questions that you should avoid at all costs.

interview questions

(Image Credit: Tim Gouw/Pexels)

  1. Can you tell me about the company?

It’s important to prepare for an interview. If you come in the door asking for an explanation of what the company does and how they do it, you’re letting everyone in the room know that you haven’t prepared. So, do the legwork ahead of time and ask more specific questions about the company’s goals for the future, or about the specifics of the position that is available. You’ll show that you’ve done your homework, and that you have a sincere interest in developing a better understanding of how you might support the company’s objectives.

Do You Know What You're Worth?

  1. What salary/vacation time will you offer?

It’s important to engage in conversations about your compensation before accepting a position. But, these talks are best reserved for after you’ve actually been offered a job. Once there is an official offer on the table, you should negotiate, but not before. Take it one step at a time. When you get there, use PayScale’s Salary Negotiation Guide to help you get the salary you deserve.

  1. Would you mind speaking with my mother or father?

According to an Adecco survey, 8 percent of recent college graduates said they’d brought a parent along to an interview. By all means, talk to your parents and other mentors in your life about your job prospects. Learn from them and ask for advice. However, it looks unprofessional and immature to involve your parents directly in your interview/hiring process. Handle it independently, through every stage, and you’re likely to get better results.

  1. How soon can I expect a promotion?

In most cases, promotions are not earned merely via time spent with the organization. More often, promotions are merit-based and not guaranteed at any stage. So, it’s not a good idea to ask when you’ll be promoted, because that depends on you and your performance.

Tell Us What You Think

What kinds of questions do you avoid asking during job interviews? We want to hear from you! Leave a comment or join the discussion on Twitter.


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Leonard Johnson

I strongly disagree with #2. As a job hunter, it’s best to identify and cut loose the lowballers as early on in the process as possible. The idea that you’re going to spend time going through 2 or 3 interviews, filling out laborious applications, and potentially flying or driving all over the country without any idea of the salary, would just be daft.

Talking salary near the beginning is a smart move for both parties, because it keeps you from wasting each others’ time. You don’t need to settle on a “number”, maybe just a general idea.

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