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Come Prepared to Ask Questions.

I always give candidates advice to have questions prepared to ask the interviewer. I don’t like it when at the end of the interview I ask what questions they have and they have none. It leaves me with the feeling the person has limited social communication skills or not interested in the job or company enough to even bother to ask a question or just plain no curiosity. In an event, it bugs me.

On the flip side too many questions can backfire on you.  The other day however I had an interview and at the end the candidate had several questions to ask me. He spent about 20 minutes or so asking questions and it was a good exchange. I thought, smart guy, detailed and well prepared. When I called the interview to an end because I had another appointment, he said, “Oh, I have about another hours worth of questions for you.”  I thought I misunderstood him. He repeated himself.  I scheduled a follow up phone call to address his other questions.

Can you guess what thoughts went through my head?  My impression of this candidate went from smart and detailed to high maintenance, can he go with the flow, can he work with ambiguity?

He lost me and the job.

My Advice – Ask the important questions, but it is important to read the signals when you have the interviewer sold and know when to stop. I would suggest 2-3 questions is about the right amount. Make them intersecting and relevant to the project or key to your success. Avoid the questions that could be answered right from the company website.