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“So, what questions do you have for me?”

Anyone who has been asked that question at the end of an interview has been caught unprepared at some point in their security career. Don’t let it be you!

Smart questions can start a valuable conversation with the folks who are interested in you. Asking the right ones will set you apart from other candidates. They can also help you decide if this opportunity is a good fit for you.

Let’s take a peek at the kinds of meaningful questions you can ask at the close of an interview.

A Great Starting Point

Build upon what has already been discussed during the interview. This lets the interviewer know you are engaged. You also have a chance to double back to any areas you want more information about.

Is this interview with your potential manager? Ask about their personal experience at the company. Social media platforms can give you a window into the professional background of the person sitting across from you. Don’t come across as a stalker! But do try to establish a connection with them.

Is this a one-on-one conversation? If you’re joining a team, ask for more information about where team members are located and what your interaction with them will be. If the team is cross-functional, ask about other departments that are involved and how they’re invested.

Thoughtful questions establish you as a partner in the interview experience.

Help them see you in the role. Give them an opportunity to envision you in the job vs. another applicant. Use personalized questions that apply if you are successfully hired into the position. What’s the most critical thing they expect you to accomplish? Or how will you be evaluated while working there?

Is personal growth important to you? Ask about opportunities for you to learn and grow within the company as ways for you to further contribute to the organization. Yet, be careful not to create the impression you’ve already got your eye on the next job after this one.

Ask more about the company. Be perceived as knowledgeable about the organization but still curious. For instance, if working in a company that has a powerful corporate social responsibility posture is important to you, ask about recent initiatives. How can you/your team contribute?

Questions to stay away from.

Never ask how much time off you’re going to have. You’re not there yet. They’ll want you to show up. Don’t create the impression you are looking for reasons to be absent before you’ve started.

Never ask about money. More and more US states are passing laws that prevent interviewers from discussing salary with candidates. Understand these rules before you go into the interview. Don’t put your interviewer in a difficult position.

A successful interview is about them perceiving you as the ideal candidate for the job. Don’t give them reasons to think you’re not!

Ready to interview? Great! Become an SJN member and find the security job you’re sure to ace the interview on!

Recommended Reading: Security Executive Interview Preparation – New Year Strategy

Interested in reading more about interviewing for your next great security job? Visit the SMR Group blog to learn our parent company’s thoughts on this and more career-minded issues.

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