You’ve survived applying for the job and round one of the interviews. By the end of the round two interview, you’ve answered all the tough questions without breaking a sweat. Now, you’re at the end of the second interview and you’re in the driver’s seat. What questions are you going to ask the employer?
As much as you might like to turn the tables a little (what are your strengths and weaknesses?), that’s probably not the way to go. This is your chance to find out everything you need to know about the job. Don’t squander this opportunity! Take advantage of it.
Questions You Should Ask Employers in Your Second Interview
Even if you had all of your questions answered in the first interview, have a few questions ready to go. A second interview is your chance to ask more in-depth questions about the job, the company, and your potential new boss. And, it’s another opportunity to demonstrate your continued interest in the job.
Please Tell Me More About a Typical Day
Even if you asked this question during your first interview, ask again for more details. Find out about daily or weekly meetings and how closely you’ll work with different teams and coworkers. If the position is remote, ask about collaboration tools used and how often the team chitchats during the day. All of this information will help paint a clearer picture of what each day will be like.
What Are the Daily/Weekly/Monthly/Yearly Expectations for This Role?
During your second interview with an employer, asking questions about expectations, strategy, and output required for the position can help you in the decision-making process. Do the expectations sound reasonable, or do you get the impression you may be overworked? Do you have the skill set to accomplish the goals required, or will you end up scrambling to figure things out? Knowing what’s required of the job can also help you tailor your interview answers to showcase your ability to excel in the position.
What’s the Biggest Challenge for This Position?
Getting an honest answer to this question from an employer could be interview gold. It’ll be up to you to decide if you can handle the challenges or not. If the challenges of the position are something you know you can handle or fix, your confidence can increase twofold. Be sure to show how you have the skills to take on the challenge. If the interviewer’s answer makes you nervous, this can be reason to pause and reconsider if this is the best job for you.
How Have You Liked or Disliked Working for This Company?
Whether you’re interviewing with your potential new boss or the HR manager, asking this question can give you insight into the company culture. Compare the answer to this question to your requirements for a new job. If the interviewer talks about positive workplace camaraderie and this is high on your list of wants, this is a great sign. If the interviewer mentions that overtime hours are often required, and you’re on the hunt for more work-life balance, this could be a red flag.
Tell Me About the Company Culture
This question can give you perspective on the company’s environment, which you absolutely need to have a grasp on after your second interview with an employer. You may discover how involved the employees are in the community or how often remote work is allowed. If the company or position is completely virtual, ask about how birthdays and holidays are celebrated, and how employee relationships are fostered. Even if the job is a perfect fit for you, you need to seriously consider company culture—it can make or break your experience!
Describe Your Management Style
If you’re interviewing with your potential boss, ask how they like to manage. The answer, or lack of one, can give you some fantastic insight into how you will be managed. Does the employer use a hands-off approach, or are they very involved in the details of your work? More importantly, consider what kind of management style works best for you.
What Are Some Challenges I’ll Face in the First Year?
Depending on the situation, you may face very few challenges during the first year (other than the typical “new job” challenges). However, there’s also a chance you will face many challenges. The interviewer should be able to explain these challenges to you and explain why they exist. If the interviewer can’t explain why the challenges exist or are hesitant to say that you’ll face any challenges, you may want to reconsider the job.
Also, if there are challenges, ask the interviewer how your boss or the company will support you and help you overcome the challenges. Do you have free rein to do whatever you think is necessary? Will they send you to training so you can develop your skills? The answers to these questions will help you get a sense of whether the company will support you during your transition or not.
Why Is This Role Open?
Ask why the position is open. Is it a new position? If yes, that probably means the department or company is growing. And, if that’s the case, what are the plans to manage that growth? How quickly will the company grow, and what does that mean for you and your position?
If it’s not a new position, try to find out why the last person left. Was the previous person promoted? A yes is excellent news. That means there’s the potential for upward growth at the company. If the person was fired or quit, you probably can’t find out the exact circumstances that led to that. But, depending how the interviewer handles the question, you may get a feel for how the situation was handled, and that can help guide your decision.
How Is Performance Measured?
How will your boss or the company measure your performance? Is there a quota you have to meet (this many sales per quarter), or are you measured on something a little more subjective (like customer satisfaction)? Are the measurements something under your control, or are you subject to the whims of others?
Equally as important, how often will the company measure your performance, and how often will they give you feedback? Will you only find out at the end of the year how well you’re performing? Or will you meet with your supervisor regularly to review your performance and discuss ways you can improve it? This can also give you insight on company culture and the overall management approach of the employer.
What Are the Next Steps?
Every company has its own interview process. For some, the second interview may be the final interview. For others, there may be more interviews or perhaps an assessment test. Finding out what to expect next keeps you in the loop and shows the interviewer that you’re invested and interested in moving forward in the process. It also helps eliminate ambiguity.
Acing Your Second Interview
With any luck, interview number two is the last interview before you get the job. Because you may not know before the interview if that’s the case, take advantage of it to learn what you can about the job and the company to help you make an informed decision. It might just be your last chance to get the necessary information.
Even though round two is over and you’re that much closer to a job offer (we hope!), there’s still more work to do. Read up on how to write an outstanding thank-you note and when and how to follow up after an interview.
And, if you’re still feeling unsure, consider talking to a FlexJobs career coach. They’ve got plenty of useful advice to help you interview and follow up the right way.
Rachel Jay contributed to this article.
Photo Credit: bigstockphoto.com
A version of this article was published on February 20, 2018.
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Rachel Jay, FlexJobs Editor and Writer
Rachel Jay is a Content Specialist for the award-winning site FlexJobs. She has worked remotely full time since 2012 and believes strongly in the benefits of remote work. With years of experience as an editor, she strives to help make…Read More >
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