IT Employment optimize

10 questions you shouldn't ask when you're being interviewed for a job


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At the end of an interview, most interviewers like to throw out the question, "Do you have any questions for me?" Almost all interviewers will ask if you have any questions, so be prepared to ask something. If you've done your research, you should be able to ask an intelligent question or two about the business. But there are some questions you should avoid, because you may give your prospective employer an unfavorable impression. The root of the problem is jumping the gun on questions that really should be saved and used only if you get the job offer.

Of course, not all of these questions will be deal-killers for every hiring manager. But if you're in the first round of competitive interviews, it's worth knowing the kinds of questions that can leave a bad impression.

#1: How much vacation time do you provide?

These and related topics about opportunities to get away from the office may make you look like a slacker in the eyes of some. If you get an offer, that's the time to ask about benefits.

#2: Can I bring my dog to the office?

Avoid asking about any quirky perks, such as keeping a hot plate in your cubicle or taking a long lunch for a tai chi class. Even asking about common perks -- such as free parking -- is petty at this point.

#3: Will I get an office?

First, don't phrase questions with the assumption that you'll get the job (at least preface them with, "If I'm hired..."). But the office question, in particular, will raise doubts in the interviewer's mind about how well you concentrate, how chatty you are during the work day, and how much time you'll spend on personal business.

#4: Can I work from home?

Again, it's not cool to ask about ways of getting out of the office before you're even offered the job.

#5: Will I have to carry a pager?

Many jobs require IT employees to be available 24/7 or on a rotating schedule, so your curiosity is understandable. But don't risk placing any doubt in the interviewer's mind about your willingness to be available.

#6: Does this company monitor Internet usage?

This question also casts doubt on your commitment to working on company business. Besides, most of us can live with some restrictions on Internet use.

#7: What's the stress level here?

If the hiring manager has seen other employees wash out because of the stress, he or she has should have already asked about how you handle stress. It's a pointless question, really, because the "level of stress" is a subjective measure. You'd be much more likely to get a useful answer from a prospective coworker.

#8: I noticed that your stock is down 10 percent this year. Do you expect people to be laid off?

It's terrific to research a company before the interview, but don't base your questions on its negative aspects. The hiring manager must not be expecting layoffs in your position, or he or she would not be going through all the effort of interviewing people.

#9: What's your management style?

The problem with this frequently recommended question is not the risk of alienating the interviewer. After all, most people like to talk about themselves, so you might think it's a subtle way to stroke your prospective employer's ego. The problem is that the hiring manager can spin the answer in a way to make negative traits seem like virtues. A self-described "hands-on manager" might drive you crazy with micromanagement. Conversely, someone who encourages employees "to work independently" may not understand the technical aspects of the work or may not be able to communicate what's expected. So if you choose to keep this question on your list, be aware that the manager's perceptions of his or her style may differ drastically from your perception of it.

#10: Do you have a tuition reimbursement program?

While it's good to let your employer know that you want to increase your knowledge about technologies or business in general, the hiring manager may wonder if you'll be more devoted to finishing your degree than putting out fires at work.

53 comments
steven.dake
steven.dake

I would recommend if you are looking for a job to read Jack Chapman's book. It's really corny but it works. use google. The title is a little misleading, but teaches you HOW to acquire an offer for a job and negotiate properly for once it has been offered. All of these comments in this blog are helpful. I would sum up this blog into one simple rule: DON'T NEGOTIATE UNTIL YOU HAVE AN OFFER. Otherwise your just wasting valuable time you should be spending convincing your employer they absolutely want to hire you.

StillWaters
StillWaters

I have boiled it down to one item for the 1st interview: Tell me what a day in this job looks like. That usually leads to the information I want about the job. They provide the details of the workload, pace, etc., which is all I need for the first time around. The other items are meaningful to me only if they are interested beyond the 1st interview. What I want them to see is that I'm interested first and foremost in the job. I want to keep my focus there. If they like me enough to follow up, then I'm in a position to ask the company-related items. Also, by the time they get to the "have any questions" part, they've usually asked what I need for salary. This works well for me. I don't have to be concerned about leaving an impressions I care more about me than doing a good job. I recognize others may want more the 1st time around.

dregeh
dregeh

...but if fishing for a job isn't where you're at in your career, then I would/do certainly ask many of these questions. For instance, I work from home several days each week now. This is important to me, and a requirement if I'm going to work for you. Thus, to NOT ASK about this would be ridiculous. Now, for those of us not desperate for work I have a couple of questions you should avoid (especially if everything is going well). 1) Do you frown on office romances? 2) Can I use the Dvorak keyboard layout on my computer? 3) Does your network bandwidth support online gaming? 4) Can I use the company's global address book for solicitation? 5) Do you frown on surfing for porn on my work computer if it's on my lunch break? These are the types of questions that will surely seal your fate - anyone have additions?

Eric Martin
Eric Martin

Suzanne is quite correct: those questions should not be posed in their current form. However, to question 3 you could ask: "Where would I be working?" They may show you an office or open plan area, or .... indicate a broom cupboard under the stairs or a crumbling office building 3 blocks away. Question 8 could be phrased: "How do you see the Company progressing in the next few years?", whilst Question 10 could come out as: "Does the Company encourage CPD (Continuing Professional Development)

egyptik
egyptik

good for teens at mcyD's

Wayne M.
Wayne M.

Although the phrasing in the article was pretty poor, no one going into an interview should avoid asking about benefits and work environment. For benefits, it is my expectation for the company to make the first move and describe benefits up front without my asking. If the interview is going well, ask about the work environment. Ask if you can be shown where you will be working and see some of the people you will be working with. This conveys enthusiasm to the interviewer and discretely answers questions about office space, etc. If you do not want to carry a pager, work overtime, or travel a lot, ask! There is no point in going after a job that you will hate doing. It is better to end it now than to quit in 3-6 months. Despite what some recruiters may say, you will not be able to negotiate your way out of these duties nor negotiate for added benefits.

dchow
dchow

Man.. that's just too obvious. Are people really that stupid? Where did you get these? Did you just think about how you wouldn't want someone asking you or did you derive this from statistical information.

royhayward
royhayward

When you are interviewing for a job, you should understand and approach the interview with one main objective: Getting a job offer. If it is a first interview, you want to get to the second interview. If it is the second interview you want to get an offer or to the next interview and so on. I advise people to be positive about wanting a job even if they find things in the interview that they think are negative. If the interviewer asks you dumb questions like, "How much overtime are you willing to work?" or tells you things like, "We are really hopping that this project won't end like the last one, where we had to lay off everyone." Just keep smiling. If you let these things make you react into closing the door, the process is over. The person interviewing you may be inexperienced or not understand what you are being hired for. Keep the process going, and get the offer, and you get to be the one who decides if you take the job. Close the door early, and they will not give you the choice. I have to disagree with #3. I ALWAYS ask and tell people to ask, "Where will I be sitting?" This does two things if you do it right. First, it should get you out of the office and into a tour mode where you will be being introduced to people. You can get the lay of the office, see the real people and take in the mood without asking suspicious or paranoid questions. Second, and most important for the purpose of the interview, this puts you in the interviewers mind pictured already hired and working there. No matter how much research you have or haven't done, one of you last questions should always be, "What is/are the next step(s)?" or "What happens next?" This also puts you in the interviewers mind as someone who has already moved on to the next step. It also shows enthusiasm for the job and getting through the process. Most interviewing managers have another job outside of interviewing candidates. They want to get this process over with. By showing that you do to, you are sharing their priorities. Finally, and this is not a question, you should make a statement. If you want the job at all, you should say, "I am really excited about this opportunity and am really looking forward to working with you/here)." Or words to that effect. In America on a face to face interview, this is something to say while giving the interviewer a good firm handshake. (In Italy you may be hugging and kissing the air, other places may be bowing, use whatever cultural ritual of your situation). Even on a phone interview, make sure you say this before it is over. Phone interview can end quickly so don't let the opportunity escape. I also think this is a good thing to and to emails that are being exchanged during the hiring process. This is called closing the interview. And there is a good reason to do it with every interview even if you are talking to the same person a second time. All things being equal, a perspective employer with two equal candidates will take the one that is excited to work for him. It is just human nature.

JamesRL
JamesRL

1) How would you feel if I took some vacation in the first three months of the job? 2) Do you make me take time off my vacation if I want to play golf a few afternoons a month? 3)Can I use sick days as vacation? 4) If I leave right after I get my degree, do I have to pay back my tuition benefits? 5) Do you mind if I make a few calls for my side business during working hours? 6) Do you have a program for drug and alcohol abusers? One question you can ask is: when would my benefits start - with many companies you can negotiate to immediately if they really want you. James

victor.gutzler
victor.gutzler

I have hired numerous technicians and actually prefer the more inquisitive ones over those who sit tight-mouthed across the table. So what if the applicant wants to know if they can work from home; if I had the opportunity, I'd like to work from home. So what if the applicant wants to know if they are working in an office or not. As the employer, I want the applicant to know what they are getting into before they make a decision and discover that the job is not what they expected, and then I have to waste time training someone who is planning on leaving anyway.... Cut the mind games, and put everything on the table so that everyone can make the right decision. That's what IT is supposed to be about anyway....

Big Ole Jack
Big Ole Jack

If it's a recruiter soliciting me, they had better disclose what the position is paying or I simply tell them to piss off and go bug someone else. What's the point of going to an interview without even having a sense of what the position is offering in terms of salary and benefits? And sorry, answers like "negotiable, depends on experience, or open" is a sign that they are cheap bastards looking to lowball or they undervalue the importance of the position they are looking to fill. If they don't have a hard figure as to what they are looking to pay for the position, then I won't waste my time any further. I've made mistakes in the past where I went on an interview, only to find out that the position was misrepresented to me and the pay was a joke compared to what I was making and what I expected the position to pay. Sure, HR expects you to put on a fake performance about being "enthusiastic and willing to work long hours without OT", but when push comes to shove, my loyalty is to my family because I work to live, not vice-versa.

retro77
retro77

I would have to disagree with you on this one. In my experience being interviewed, I never want to bring up questions that get me something. In the 1st interview, I dont bring up the benefits questions or the vacation questions. Most of the time I already know this by browsing the companies website before going into the interview. If by the second interview, they havent mentioned benefits, then I ask at an appropriate time. Like when they ask me "Do you have any questions?" I just dont want the 1st impression of me is one that I want stuff out of the job for me more than my willingness to get the job done for the company.

JamesRL
JamesRL

When I am interviewing, I want someone who shows interest and enthusiasm. I usually do bring up the subject of benefits, and when I do its entirely appropriate to ask follow up questions on them. If I haven't, ask a general question. It is inappropriate to ask if you can take vacation in the first three months. Its probably not appropriate to sound too greedy. But if you have shown some interest in other aspects of the job (and you should try hard to ask interesting questions), then its ok by me to ask about benefits and work environment. James

jdclyde
jdclyde

At the total lack of interviewing skills a lot of people have. From the way they dress, to not being prepared for the interview, they are a mess. Some even forget to bring their own pen. Did they not think they would have to fill out an application? Hello? It is better to hear something you know twice than to miss something important just because some one "assumed" that it was just too obvious to mention.

lydiajunis
lydiajunis

The exit interview serves a number of important functions. When trends in voluntary separations are tracked, the firm may be provided a valuable heads up concerning discrimination problems. It can be anything : Discrimination between expertise, Discrimination between profiles, Discrimination between Grades or categories or bands likewise . --------------- oliviaharis Internet Marketing

jessehclark
jessehclark

Despite turning down the offer because I decided I could get an even better job (no offense to anyone), I got a call back from Best Buy's Geek Squad the day after my first interview offering me a pretty nice position. I am a college grad (English BA) with no tech experience (employment-wise, anyways...I was obviously capable of doing everything required for the job) and no technical training (I'm not Windows Cert., A+, nothing). I was offered 35 hours a week (PT) for about $11 an hour. Sounds nice to me, given that I invested nothing in preparing for any sort of tech career. Anyways, here's how the interview went, and my advice: Get in their head. The best job for you, and the best employee for a company, is one that fits well. That's the whole point of the interview. Granted, you learn a lot by actually talking to the interviewer(s) and the employees, but too many people forget that you have to do your homework before going in. I hunted down all of Geek Squad's price lists, mission statement, and even found their training manuals online. When I went in, I made sure I had a nice pen in my pocket, my phone was silenced, and I prepared (even though some would call it overkill) a resume folder, cover letter, and letters of recommendation. I included my personal business card with call back number. I wore standard issue Geek Squad black dress shoes and pants, a white long sleeve shirt (because I despise the short sleeved ones) and a skinny black tie, and I knew their mottos and mindset forward and backward. I made sure to look clean, put together, and smell good. I made damn sure it felt like they were interviewing an employee, not an applicant. I was someone they could see talking to customers. And it works. When I applied for a position in the Chemistry department in college, I did the same thing. I dressed like a grad student, walked like a grad student, and talked like a grad student. Too bad I was an English undergrad, but I still got the cushiest student job on the face of the earth. A rhetoric professor once explained that idea in much more technical terms. If I asked you "What does a professor look like?" What would you say? Many people think of the stereotypical tweed patch-elbow jacket, khakis, and loafers. For a reason; playing "dress-up" makes an enthymemic argument. If you look like X, and they're looking for an X, then you must be the X they're looking for. Of course, if you're not good for the job, you're not good for the job. But a little thought can go a long way. PS- To everyone: please learn how to spell. It's not that hard. Thanks.

Tony Hopkinson
Tony Hopkinson

Totally the wrong attitude, stop wasting time and just offer them oral sex as soon as you get in there! Rule one, stupid people don't employ me :D Rule two, because of rule one, finding out they are stupid is something I like to do quick, so I can spend my time productively. Rule three, if you want a confrontational interview, mention the rules first. You know, no gouging, kicks below the belt etc. Assumptions will get you hurt. Rule four. Interviews are the start of a negotiation, dropping your trousers, and proffering a jar of lubricant with a plaintive exxpression will just get you gang shagged by the entire management team. If you get a job, it's because you were a good one! Rule five If you are OK with rules 1 to 4, I just might, might I say, give you the chance to be employ me. I need reasons though, not including well we would have all used the lubricant but you only fetched half a jar! Before you ask, three months out of work since Jan 1981. There is no such thing as two equal candidates, they just had the same incompetent interviewer.

jmgarvin
jmgarvin

"If the interviewer asks you dumb questions like, "How much overtime are you willing to work?" or tells you things like, "We are really hopping that this project won't end like the last one, where we had to lay off everyone." Just keep smiling. If you let these things make you react into closing the door, the process is over." Damn straight the process is over. The second I hear anything like that, I'm out of the door. There are lot more problems facing the company than hiring problems. I've taken jobs where I've been asked questions like this and I've ALWAYS regretted it. "The person interviewing you may be inexperienced or not understand what you are being hired for." Or the company could stink on ice...I'll take my chances elsewhere, thank you. "Keep the process going, and get the offer, and you get to be the one who decides if you take the job. Close the door early, and they will not give you the choice." There are times when it is better to close that door early and not waste everybody's time. "This is called closing the interview. And there is a good reason to do it with every interview even if you are talking to the same person a second time. All things being equal, a perspective employer with two equal candidates will take the one that is excited to work for him. It is just human nature." Maybe, but being overly aggressive is just as bad (if not worse) than being passive. So it's a fine line to walk and you need to be able to feel out the situation.

dregeh
dregeh

Very nice list. I'm sure you've heard a few of these, huh? :)

rustty
rustty

Victor, you are a truly enlightened employer! May I have an interview with you please! As my Cynicism when it comes to interviews & interviewers could use a bit of a slap.

sgt_shultz
sgt_shultz

and THAT was helpful. Tony, you overdid your metaphor. my 2 cents.

royhayward
royhayward

You don't want to sound greedy or that you really need the medical insurance because you know you are terminally ill, (even if you are, you don't want to sound like it) Benefits and Vacation time, and pay schedule and the like are questions that can wait for the second interview or as information with the offer. If it is a large company they will probably have the same benys as all of the other large companies. If it is a small company, they may be creative. I would ask a general, "Can you tell me about your benefits?" question at the end if they haven't covered it. They probably just forgot to and will rattle of the standard set of words. I bet I could write a paragraph that would describe 90% of the benefits packages out there. Questions about premiums and such are points that go with the offer, as in who cares if your premium is $300.00 if you are getting paid a million. It is important information but not critical until you actually think you might work there soon. Again, you don't want questions about benys to occupy much of your time as the interview is about getting a job offer, not calculating payroll deductions.

royhayward
royhayward

as I don't know you personally. My post was intended to offer some of my experience to those with less. You must have had to interview much more often than me and have had some bad experiences. I hope that you and all TR members have the best possible luck in finding and keeping exciting and fulfilling employment. Its sounded like something in my post upset you. For that I humbly apologize. However from your response I have not been able to ascertain what that was, and can't offer a correction or clarification. So based on your vast experience what questions would you suggest or not suggest to the young tech interviewing for a job?

royhayward
royhayward

whose time are we waisting? Some time it is good experience to interview, just to have the experience of interviewing. If you get some bad impressions or information during the intial interview, but you go to the second anyway, you have the chance to find out if there are other factors that my mitigate this impression. If you close the door, you will never no, but will obviously still feel superior and spend a lot of time patting yourself on the back for your early pull-out wisdom. I interviewed with a company and one of the guys was completely incompetent as an interviewer. He tried to ask manager like questions and really had no clue. He was also gone a month after I was hired. But with your strategy, I would have walked out and never come back missing one two thirds of that interview and years in one of the most fun jobs I ever had. If you go ahead and complete the interview process and get the offer that you aren't going to take you, still get the experience of going through the process. It becomes a practice interview for you, and you might get some free travel or lunches. I hope that most of us have not interviewed so much that we are pros at it. Interviewng well is a skill, and requires some practice. I have not done this, but I have seen people that go on job interviews every year just to keep the skill and to see what the market is like. Having been on all three sides of this process. (interviewer, interviewie, and recruiter) There really are after the interview discussions that invlove topics like, "Will they take the job if we offer it?" If you are passive, "Well this job might be fun, if I have time inbetween my other intrests." type of attitude you may be passed over for a less qualified candidate who is excited about the job. Maybe you think really quickly and never have regrets, but I like to have a plan. Feeling out the situation for me requires some distance. I will take the comments from the interview and discuss them with my wife, family and friends. Not to get their advice really, but just to talk it out. Then if I really don't want to continue, when they call to setup the second interview, I can always say "No." But if I over react, and then wish I hadn't I will never get the chance to say, "No."

JamesRL
JamesRL

Though in some cases I hear it after they are hired not during the interview. James

royhayward
royhayward

Or is the guru separated from those others, like a guru in meditation that can spell C, C++, Java, VB, VB.NET, Oracle, Citrix and SQL Server?

royhayward
royhayward

Most of the time for me, there has been some first level screening, HR person or Manager has a short phone interview, and does a specific Q and A to verify you are applying, verify contact info and ask questions that they have been told to ask and set-up the bigger interview. Kind of like having the intern or nurse fill out the chart and then leave it for the doctor. You need to answer the questions but that person will not make a diagnosis. In the interview the first person is not normally the decision maker. Sometimes the first interview is the same day as the second interview. But there is almost always a process or progression that you move thru. Only making it to the latter part if you successfully interview with the first part. I have only had one job where I spoke with only one person and then was hired on the spot. And they were really just looking for bodies to fill chairs. It was weird, but worked out in the end.

RknRlKid
RknRlKid

...its the phrase "second interview!" Granted, I haven't had alot of non-government type experience. But I have NEVER had a second interview anywhere. Either I was weeded out on the first attempt, or immediately hired. If someone told me I might be considered for a call a second interview, I would say thank you, then go about my business. I wouldn't be waiting for a call. Maybe that is the problem with the industry. Even the large employers here (Goodyear, Republic Paper) weed out the unqualified before interviews even start. From my perspective, two and three interviews means that someone is indecisive or is overly concerned with CYA. I can be wrong. Like I said above, I don't have as much experience in the business world like you guys do. But when a potential employer waffles during an interview, like some of the others I make an unconscious decision and realize that this probably not a good prospect for me.

jdclyde
jdclyde

or does one look like the mail man and the other the milk man? :0

royhayward
royhayward

Then again one place I worked implemented that policy and then canned it when 9 of 10 of the first batch failed. But they were scary people anyway. but it made me wonder.

HAL 9000
HAL 9000

A DNA test to make sure that the Horrorispital gave your parents the right child? If it comes back as you think it should you will also have an open case for a large Legal Payout. Now that would make the Drug Testing all worth while wouldn't it? :D Col

maecuff
maecuff

require a drug screen as part of the hiring process. Yes, a bucket in an aluminum structure. With a person standing just on the other side of a little curtain. Not a highlight in my life.

w2ktechman
w2ktechman

there was no tv torture. Instead, they made you sit there quietly for 15-20 minute stretches, then do another test while I wait. nothing like spending 4 hours of my life (actual time about 45 minutes) waiting bored as hell, for a piece of paper to give to a possible employer. The only good news about the screening is that you are almost certain o get the job afterwards, as hey dont pay for i for everyone that interviews.

Shellbot
Shellbot

i've never been drug screened..is that popular over there now for a new job????? yuk.. bucket???? dare i ask??

maecuff
maecuff

scrap books. I find it hard to believe that we actually came from the same parents.

jdclyde
jdclyde

After all, there are whole web sites dedicated to such things, and I can't even imagine the trolls you might attract! :p Scrap booking on the other hand is a great form of punishment!

maecuff
maecuff

enjoy a good crushing. Kind of makes the whole scrap booking thing worthwhile. I'm not too worried about your recovery. You don't strike me as the delicate type.

neilb
neilb

but realise that I will be crushed psychologically by this and may not recover. :_| On the other hand, I only wish that I could have made the scrap-booking programme last longer. :D Ah, the joys of bipolar disease...

maecuff
maecuff

from my drug screening. It's intrusive and disgusting. And I had to wait for half an hour. I blame Neil for my misery in waiting. They had a PBS show on about scrap booking. The woman hosting the show had a British accent, so naturally, that makes it Neil's fault. Do you have any idea how painful it is to watch a show about scrap booking? And the final result of her little project was a picture so completely hideous that I thought she should shoot herself in the head for being any part of it. All in all, the drug screen experience wasn't fun. (There was a flimsy screen and a bucket involved).

jdclyde
jdclyde

"you want me to go test some drugs? cool!" B-) Yes, I DID say that for my current job.... :D

royhayward
royhayward

I guess my remarks were unclear. Managers aren't mind readers. That is why I say to tell them you want the job. I say do it even if you only want it a little. If you don't want the job, then definitely don't say you do. I never meant to imply that. Because you won't want to not get the job, an later discover that they didn't think you really wanted it so they offered it to the other guy, you should let them know clearly when you are interested. Whew - I am going to have to make sure I am more clear in these posts. :)

Tony Hopkinson
Tony Hopkinson

which probably explains our positions. I'm a tech, a worker, a doer. I'm bloody good at it as well. Making me a manager would prove to the world you were unsuited to the job. :D The game I play is convincing a prospective employer that my arrogance is, has been and will be justifiable. Twenty-seven years of undiscovered incompetence and counting... I might think I want the job, I might even tell you I do, but not if I don't. It's not up to me to convince myself I want the job, that's your role. You are selling it to me. I don't help anyone sell me a Fiat when I want a Porsche. You wouldn't, why should I?

royhayward
royhayward

in the process that you detailed to have the 'Sellers Market' If you are the perfect fit for a job, then you are in a great position. One of the questions I have seen often on TR, on other forums, and in person with younger techs is how to get those valuable skills. One way, and they way I did it, was to start at the bottom and then work like crazy to learn all I could from the job and co-workers. But to do this you have to get the job. That is the first case where my advice was intended. If you are like me, and you last company promoted you into management. And you hated it as it took you away from the geeky techy stuff that you loved. And you interview at a company for a position that you are now overqualified for. You want them to believe that you really want this job, and are not just practicing you interviewing skills or just there for lunch. I don't feel that I prostitute my self or my skills. But I do know that in order to do the job, you have to get the job. And in many cases to get the job, you have to play the game. There will always be some that don't have to play and things still turn out. And there are times when you didn't realize there was a game, but end up winning anyway. But if you are out there pounding the pavement, having an "I want this job" attitude is a good strategy in my book. But again that is just my opinion gleaned from my experience, and everyone is free to disagree.

Tony Hopkinson
Tony Hopkinson

I didn't find it insulting or anything, merely misguided. You are the one with the desirable skills. You have something they need. You have something other's need. If the above is true it's a sellers market, if it isn't, make yourself valuable. So they show you why you should work for them They tell you how pleased they are that you are going to consider it. I always find it amazing how many employers who want techs who understand business, but don't want them to apply that knowledge to their relationship with them. It's not a one sided relationship, I'm interviewing them usually more dilligently than they are me. Want me to work for you? Make me an offer that makes me want to do so. Others will, do and have.

MrBillG59
MrBillG59

I think you need to look up the words waist and waste in the dictionary and be REAL careful when you write your resume.

MrBillG59
MrBillG59

I think you need to look up the words waist and waste in the dictionary and be REAL careful when you write your resume.

Bob.Kerns
Bob.Kerns

If an interviewer asked me how much overtime I was willing to work, I would certainly end the process! How much thought does that take, really? On the other hand, I DO make it a point to ask about overtime, because it's an important indicator of how things work at the company -- overtime being an indicator of something being broken. It may be just that they haven't been able to find enough good people yet - but if it's a recurring problem for months on end because the schedules are over-optimistic and there's no process in place to manage the scope -- well, unless my mandate is to FIX that problem, and there's a solid commitment of support to do so, etc. etc., than I'm not interested. (And since I don't really want to manage, I'm probably not interested anyway, unless I'm helping a committed manager achieve those goals). However, as you point out, there are things to be learned in an interview. Including negative lessons. Especialy if the company may be a competitor to a present or future employer! So, given that I'm already there, IF I am learning things, I'd continue the interview. But I would, at the end, or sooner, indicate that the we don't have a match. I know as both interviewer and interviewee, I have other things to do. So ending it as soon as either party knows it's not going anywhere, is doing them a favor. But certainly, I distinguish between the interviewer and the company. If the bad interviewer happens to be the hiring manager, though, it may indicate that the team may be weak and/or short-handed. And an interviewer with an attitude that's negative is a big red flag. A huge one, actually. If it's just one person, I'd be asking all kinds of questions to the others. All companies have problems. If they're open about the problems and are looking for someone who can help them solve them, that's positive engagement, and may be an interesting challenge. But not if it's all "overtime, disasters, nothing ever changes". Of course, I haven't found many of those. In fact, I've rejected very few companies (and have been rejected by very few) over a long career, because I generally go in with a good picture of what's going on with the company. Usually I know someone at the company, and am known by someone at the company. I have seldom worked with recruiters when looking, and can't recall ever taking a job that was found through a recruiter!

jmgarvin
jmgarvin

I've had too many bad experience to believe that I'd hit the 1 in a million chance of getting that dream job you did. Plus, my tolerance for stupidity is pretty low, so I tend not to even want to deal with it, I'll just move on and find a different job.

Tony Hopkinson
Tony Hopkinson

perhaps not surprising given my attitude. :D I'm a bit rusty now, but one thing I have learned if you go in with a begging mentality, they'll enjoy a good beg whether you get the job or not