IT Employment

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Reverse Interviewing: Is it applicable?

By rapell ·
Recently I was reading an article that talked about things that interviewers hate, and one was "Candidates who don't ask questions". I am now thinking that, maybe the best interview style is where the candidate asks all the questions! While am sure this could be easy for Tech interviews, am not so sure about other fields. The "interviewers" could provide the "interviewee" with a list of topics from which to choose and fire away. They can then give their answers and then he can use his knowledge to grade/correct them. The "interviewers" in turn will size him up according to questions asked, their relevance, level of detail, etc. Attack me, or help me figure!

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I doubt it

by Jaqui In reply to Reverse Interviewing: Is ...

since they could get help posing questions for each subjectlikely to be available, skewing the perception of the "interviewer" with a false impression of knowledge / skill sets.

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Would only work for internal employees

by DadsPad In reply to Reverse Interviewing: Is ...

Actually, I have always been able to ask questions in interviews. The interviewer is the first to ask questions and talk about your experiences and about the company. It is then your job to pay close attention to the questions, then at the end of the interview (where they ask you if you have any questions) you can get more indepth knowledge and further impress with your knowledge.

While the interview is most important, the end where you can ask a question can leave a good impression. Which is what you want.

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You're on the right track, but...

by info In reply to Reverse Interviewing: Is ...

Here's the key: the client wants you to be the ONE; they just want to get on with their project/job; so the sooner they find a fit the better.

To that end, the client wants to MEET you. They don't want someone who answers all question right, as if their was such a thing as "right".

In fact, it is your response to questions where you don't have a "right answer" that will tell them more about you.

In business, there are many times when we don't know the answer, and have to find out, or come up with a solution ourselves. That is what the client wants to see.

Someone who is comfortable not-knowing.

Good luck!

Call if it rings true.

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Well it's a method I use when being interviewed

by Tony Hopkinson In reply to Reverse Interviewing: Is ...

though that's more of a control thing.
I don't think one way interviewing works from either side of the table.

There are things both parties need to know, and things that both parties need the other to know.

A good interview is one where that happens.

The questions you might expect to be asked, may be completely irrelevant to the other party. I nearly always ask if there's a QA department and what's the process, (integrated or over the partition). I've often been met by surprise, by those who don't think this is question a code monkey needs to bother with. They were expecting "Do I have to wear a tie?", something I couldn't care less about....

Asking 'good' questions is something I try to do and look for no matter which side of the table I'm sitting at.

Bad questions from a potential employer are as much of a red flag as 'bad' answers.

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by The 'G-Man.' In reply to Well it's a method I use ...

I attended an interiew years ago for a replacement Network Admin position at a university.

All was going well when I got on the subject of why they were looking for a replecement admin (fair question in my book, was wondering if the previous person was promoted or move on to better things).

The whole interview froze up!

I was a given story (I could tell it was a lie by the body language) about somebody being hired and then suddenly leaving within a few weeks.

The interviewers then got defensive and one in particular basically started to rant at me for asking such a question, claiming I was not listening to anything that was said during the interview, he had covered that subject already (er...NO) and basically I should not be asking such questions. Man was he angry!

But get this....the guy was going to be my 'new boss'!

I walked...guess I knew the real reason now.

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I consider that a GREAT question

by unhappyuser In reply to Indeed...

If you had not asked that question your career could have suffered.

I've been on both sides of the table. I would be concerned if the interviewee doesn't ask questions. Are they really interested in the job? Are they desparate for a job?

I've always tried to research the company a little, review their needs, the duties of the position, etc. Doing a little research will impress your (potential) future employer. Anything you can do to get to the top of the list is important in these econmic times. Good Luck!


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by info In reply to Indeed...

Dear G Man,

Very interesting to read your post. I remember an interview which went swimmingly, but there was a nagging feeling that there was something nasty in the woodshed. :)

The agent rang and said the client was happy, and could I start soon-as.

I told him I wasn't convinced. He got the client to speak with me. Same schmooze. Still wasn't convinced.

Found out two weeks later, the whole project was shelved; basically they were looking for someone to lay the blame on.

Long story...but follow you gut :) is probably a wise suggestion.


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by info In reply to Well it's a method I use ...


"Asking 'good' questions is something I try to do and look for no matter which side of the table I'm sitting at.

Bad questions from a potential employer are as much of a red flag as 'bad' answers."

Well said. Couldn't agree more.

Best regards

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Yes indeed

by Tony Hopkinson In reply to Absolutely...

Are you happy with putting in seventy hours a week, to meet a deadline, with no extra pay.

What are your three strengths and weaknesses?

What is the 15th property of the fifth component down on the right most column of the tool pallet in VS2003?

Why is VB6 a great modern development tool?

The answer to all these questions is -:

"Thank you for your time, and goodbye"

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Reverse Interviewing is your value differentation to get that job you want.

by gseverin In reply to Yes indeed

Glad to see that some people are finally picking up on the fact that interviewing is a two way process. I have had great success with reverse interviewing employers since it does make you stand out from the crowd ? and you come across as someone with a spine who is not afraid to ask questions, and therefore a potential employee who knows what he wants. It is only then natural to expect that you also have questions, and that some of those can be challenging. And that?s a good thing! Because when you challenge your future employer they have to sell themselves onto you! For more information you can subscribe to my free newsletter at Best wishes, Gerry

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