How To Ask Touchy Interview Questions – Career Advice Nigeria 2011
Unless you belong to a select group of people, you need a job in order to survive. Oprah Winfrey doesn’t need to work another day in her life. The rest of us will have a hard time paying the electric bill without a job.
yet, when we’re going through the song and dance of interviewing for a job, we pretend as if money isn’t on the top of our list of priorities.
I hate to bust the bubble but it is and always will be. Job-search etiquette dictates waiting for the employer to bring up salary, benefits and vacation. Conventional wisdom says that if you bring it up, you appear more focused on the perks than on doing the job, which sends a bad sign to employers.
So you interview over the phone and in person, and after days or weeks of conversation about the job, you don’t know how much it pays or if you would be able to occasionally leave early to pick up your son from school. These issues can be deal breakers for many job seekers, but they’re taboo topics during the interview process.
If time is money, then both the hiring manager and the job seeker should be happy to get the basics out of the way before wasting time with interviews that might not matter if the salary is too low. We decided to find out if there is a way to bring up these touchy subjects in a more reasonable timeline.
Should you do it? Before job seekers can even ponder how to bring up these issues, the primary concern is whether or not they should even broach the subjects or if they are making a heinous misstep. For many employers, as long as your approach is reasonable and tactful, you don’t need to worry.
It’s definitely fine to ask about the salary, benefits and perks early in the process. Think of it this way: Sometimes recruiters will push candidates to give them a ballpark salary requirement and they’ll say they can’t proceed without knowing so everyone’s on the same page. Shouldn’t you also feel entitled to knowing information up front to not waste anyone’s time? You’re doing everyone, including yourself, by asking and getting an overall idea of the complete package.
You certainly can ruin your chances of being hired by asking the questions the wrong way, but the topics alone won’t overshadow your CV and experience. You have every right to know what you will and won’t get, so don’t be afraid to ask before the end of the second interview,” During the first interview, you’ll want to get a general idea, ideally from the human resources department (assuming you were interviewed by HR), as these are more administrative questions.
Make this line of questioning one of your last orders of business, but not because it could harm your chances of getting hired. Instead playing the waiting game can help you receive a better salary offer.
Often there is room for negotiation on everything. The more valuable you are as a candidate, the more leverage you have. You are best served to determine how well suited you are for the job before you begin asking about perks.
How to do it. Now that you know that you can safely bring up sensitive topics during an interview on your own timeline, you need to know how to do it. After all, asked in the wrong way, any question can be damaging during a job interview. Here are five on how to raise the questions, get the information you need and stay on the interviewer’s good side.
Be assertive but reasonable. Simply ask in an assertive way. You can couch it with a statement such as, ‘I don’t want to sound presumptuous as if I expect to already get this job, but I would like to know the salary range before proceeding.
Prove why it’s in their interest, too [Recruiters] don’t want to waste their time, so remind them of that fact. You may ask in this manner ‘Mr. Recruiter, I know your time is valuable and that the last thing you’d want to do is waste your time on a candidate who wasn’t a perfect fit. With that in mind — and I acknowledge these questions are difficult to discuss upfront — would it be okay if we discussed some uncomfortable questions today?’”
You want to know about this information so you don’t waste your time, and they probably feel the same way, too.
Wait for the right moment. Job seekers should wait for a chance to ask their question rather than force it into the interview. When the interviewer asks if you have any questions at the end of the interview and you should consider taking this as a cue to ask the questions.
“You then say, ‘Thank you for asking. There is one item I realized we didn’t discuss. Always couch and sandwich difficult situations by saying something good and nice to start, hit them with the hard stuff, then end with something uplifting and positive.”
Ultimately what matters is that you read the cues of the interviewer and ask what makes you feel comfortable and what suits the mood of the moment. As long as you’re polite and ask your questions in a reasonable manner, you can walk out of the interview without any regrets. Please note that questions concerning salary and benefits should never be asked at the first interview unless the interviewer broaches the topic. The question should be left to the second interview.
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