What NOT To Ask During a Job Interview

Mar 5, 2020

What Does Your Company Do?

Asking this, or “What does this job entail?” shows that you have not committed to learning about the company and the position. If you are unclear about something you’ve researched, phrase your question differently. Example: “I saw in the job description that this position is responsible for [X]. Could you tell me what that looks like on a typical day?”

When Can I Take Time off for Vacation?

Asking about time off before even obtaining a job offer implies that you’re more interested in life outside the office. While this may be true, your future employer wants to see a dedicated worker. If it doesn’t come up in an interview or your offer letter, you can ask prior to accepting the position that has been offered to you.

What Is the Salary for This Position?

Do not ask this question on a first interview. If the company asks what salary expectations are, feel free to answer truthfully. But if it doesn’t come up in an interview, this is another question that is best left for after you receive an offer.

How Long Would I Have to Wait to Get Promoted?

This will make you look like you’re only interested in this job until something better comes along. It’s better to focus on opportunities to become a better employee instead of a specific job title. Example: “How do you promote growth in your employees?”

Can I Do This Job From Home?

This is a generational question, because so many people do work from home in today’s workforce. Typically, a job description will state whether the job is a remote position. Even if it is not specified, don’t ask this question in the first interview. It could suggest (especially to someone of an older generation) that you are not a team player because you don’t want to be in the office. Save this one for after the job offer.

Do You Check References?

Could you sound more suspicious? Even if you are dying to know, do not ask this question! You shouldn’t need to give your references a heads-up because you should have asked them before you listed them.

Do You Monitor Internet Usage?

Again, this is a highly suspicious question that automatically makes you look devious. Always assume that you’re being monitored on the Internet while in the office—or even out of the office if you’re using company property.

Final Tip: Consider requesting to see the employee handbook if you receive a job offer. Many of these questions can be answered there before you even have to ask.

Written by: Sarah Perlman

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