Getting Started Job Interview Tips

17 Questions You Should Never Ask at a Job Interview

Written by Peter Jones

We all hate that moment when the interviewer turns to us and says: “Do you have any questions for us?” Next time you find yourself in the hot seat, make sure to avoid these questions. You’ll be glad you did.

SEE ALSO: The 6 Hardest Interview Questions of 2016

1. What does your company do?

Try Google. Ideally, before the interview.

2. What will my salary be?

It never pays to talk money in the interview stage. Save it for when you get the offer.

3. Will I have to work long hours?

This is as good as saying, “I can’t be bothered trying very hard.”

4. How long before I accumulate vacation time?

Save it for the HR orientation.

5. How soon before I can get promoted?

Focus on getting the job you’re interviewing for and doing it well. Then worry about your next move.

6. When will I be eligible for a raise?

Again, focus on getting the job. And save the money talk for your first review.

7. Will I have my own office?

Why bother asking this one, really? You either will or you won’t.

8. Will I get along with my coworkers?

No interviewer is going to answer “no,” nor could they possibly have any idea. This just makes you look emotionally immature and slightly deranged. Try asking about the work culture instead.

9. Will I have an expense account?

Not if you don’t get the job!

10. [insert personal question]

Just don’t.

11. Can I make personal calls?

If you have to ask, it sounds like you’re not planning on doing any actual work.

12. I heard [insert salacious detail] about the CEO. Is that true?

Skip the rumor mill and stick to being respectful.

13. Do you monitor internet usage or screen emails?

This suggests you have something to hide.

14. Do you do background checks?

They probably do. Don’t act suspicious!

15. Can I arrive early/leave late?

This is just a no-brainer. Even if you can work fast enough to get it done in less than 8 hours, it’s not interview appropriate.

16. How’d I do?

Just don’t.

17. Did I get the job?

Even if they were ready to hire you on the spot, this question will likely make them change their minds.

Of course, not asking questions is almost worse than asking any of the above. Try to come up with a few safe ones that will assert your intelligence and valuable qualities and prepare them well in advance.


About the author

Peter Jones