The 8 worst questions to ask at your job interview
At the end of a job interview, the hiring manager is likely to ask you what questions you have. This is the time for you to ask all the things that you need to know to help you decide if the job and the company are right for you. But you're still being evaluated, so it's important to think about what you're asking and how you're framing your questions.
Here are eight of the worst questions to ask your interviewer (and yet job candidates ask every single one of these, most of them multiple times).
1. "What exactly does the company do?" If you ask for information that you could have easily found on your own with a quick internet search, you're signaling to your interviewer that you're not very resourceful (and that you'll likely be the co-worker who asks colleagues basic questions rather than seeking out the answer yourself).
2. "What was it about my application that caught your eye?" Whether you intend it this way or not, this comes across as fishing for compliments. It's also not really what you're there to discuss; the interview time is for each side to figure out if you'd be the right fit for each other. It's safe to assume that if you were invited for an interview, your qualifications are what caught the hiring manager's eye.
3. "How long does it usually take to get promoted?" Your interviewer wants to hear that you're excited about the job you're interviewing for, not that you're already thinking about your next move after that. You can certainly ask about professional development opportunities, but don't imply that you see this job as a quick stop on the way to something better.
4. "Can my mom wait in your lobby while we do the interview?" It's not a big deal if someone else drove you to the interview, but that person should entertain herself somewhere else while you're interviewing.
RELATED: 10 things you should never say at work:
5. "How financially stable is the company?" It's not that it's unreasonable for you to want to investigate this. It's smart to get a handle on how stable the company is. But your interviewer isn't likely to tell you that they're going to slash positions in the department you're interviewing for, even if they are. And asking the question puts your interviewer on the spot, since she may not be able to share this kind of information even if she wants to. Instead, do your due diligence on this question outside of the interview.
6. "Why are your Glassdoor reviews so terrible?" If a company has awful reviews on Glassdoor (or other careers site), you can ask about it – but you shouldn't word it like this! You're less likely to make your interviewer feel defensive if you don't frame it as an accusation. Instead, say something like, "I noticed that the company has some critical reviews on Glassdoor. I'm curious about your take on that and whether it's something the company is trying to address."
7. "Would you be open to me working half time?" If an employer is advertising a full-time position, that's generally because they have full-time work that needs to be done. If you spring a request on them for half-time work, you're not solving the problem that they're hiring to solve since it means they'd have to hire two people instead of just one. If you're only interested in half-time work, you're better off seeking positions that are explicitly advertised as part time. (The exception to this is if you have highly in-demand skills for your field, in which case you're better positioned to negotiate this type of thing.)
8. "Can I have the job?" There's a piece of old-school job-search advice that says you should always end an interview by asking for the job. Otherwise the interviewer won't know if you really want the job, the theory goes. Maybe this went over well at some point in the past, but it's likely to make most modern interviewers uncomfortable. They're highly unlikely to offer you the job on the spot. They're going to think it over, possibly interview other candidates, talk to references and probably discuss it with colleagues. Asking for the job on the spot will come across as naive about how hiring works and end the interview on an awkward note.