The Art of Asking Great Questions in Interviews

Asking good questions in an interview is an art form, one that can make all the difference in your success. Whether you’re the interviewer or the interviewee, the questions you ask can shape the entire conversation and lead to a more productive and positive outcome.

Asking great questions during an interview is like dressing appropriately for the occasion. Just as appropriate business attire shows respect for the interviewer and the company, well-thought-out questions demonstrate your interest and engagement. They’re both essential elements in making a positive impression and landing the job.

In this guide, we’ll explore the techniques, types, and benefits of asking good questions in interviews. We’ll also provide some common mistakes to avoid and tips for preparing for your next interview. So, get ready to up your questioning game and ace your next interview!

Asking Good Questions in an Interview

Asking good questions in an interview is essential for both the interviewer and the interviewee. It helps the interviewer gather information to make informed decisions and allows the interviewee to showcase their skills and experience.

Asking good questions in an interview is like having a magic wand that unlocks the secrets of the job. Just as an object that best describes you can reveal your personality, well-crafted questions showcase your curiosity and engagement. They’re the key to uncovering the company’s culture, values, and whether it’s a good fit for your career aspirations.

So, step into the interview with a bag full of insightful questions, ready to cast your spell and discover the hidden treasures that await you.

Techniques for Effective Questioning

Methods for Crafting Open-Ended Questions

* Begin questions with “what,” “how,” “why,” or “could you elaborate on.”

Asking good questions in an interview is like having a secret weapon. It shows you’re engaged and interested. Plus, it gives you a chance to learn more about the company and the position. But remember, the interview is a two-way street.

You should also be prepared to answer questions about yourself. Here’s a great article on how to do that. Once you’ve nailed your answers, you can go back to focusing on asking killer questions that will make you stand out from the crowd.

  • Avoid questions that can be answered with a simple “yes” or “no.”
  • Encourage the interviewee to provide detailed responses.

Strategies for Asking Clarifying Questions

* Restate the interviewee’s answer to ensure understanding.

  • Use phrases like “Can you give me an example?” or “Could you explain that further?”
  • Ask for specific details to clarify ambiguous responses.

Tips for Formulating Probing Questions

* Dig deeper into the interviewee’s answers by asking follow-up questions.

  • Explore the interviewee’s motivations, experiences, and perspectives.
  • Challenge the interviewee’s assumptions or ask for alternative solutions.

Types of Questions to Ask, Asking good questions in an interview

Situational Questions

* Describe a time when you faced a difficult situation and how you handled it.

These questions assess the interviewee’s problem-solving abilities and resilience.

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Getting the questions right is key to unlocking the candidate’s potential and making a stellar hire.

Behavioral Questions

* Give me an example of a time when you used your communication skills effectively.

Asking good questions in an interview is key to getting the most out of it. You want to ask questions that will help you learn more about the company, the position, and the interviewer. You can also ask questions that will help you showcase your skills and experience.

For example, you could ask about the company’s culture, or about the interviewer’s experience in the field. If you’re interviewing for a sales position, you could ask about the company’s sales process. Asking good questions shows that you’re interested in the position and that you’re prepared to learn more about it.

It also gives you a chance to make a good impression on the interviewer. Check out an interview with Nicolas Darvas for more tips on asking good questions in an interview.

These questions evaluate the interviewee’s past behavior and how it relates to the job requirements.

Hypothetical Questions

* If you were in charge of a team, how would you motivate and inspire your team members?

These questions gauge the interviewee’s strategic thinking and leadership potential.

Benefits of Asking Good Questions

Advantages for the Interviewer

* Gather comprehensive information to make informed hiring decisions.

  • Evaluate the interviewee’s communication skills and critical thinking abilities.
  • Create a more engaging and informative interview experience.

Benefits for the Interviewee

* Showcase their skills and experience by providing detailed responses.

  • Demonstrate their ability to think critically and solve problems.
  • Build rapport with the interviewer and make a positive impression.

Examples of Successful Interviews Resulting from Effective Questioning

* An interviewer asked a situational question about a time the interviewee had to deal with a difficult customer. The interviewee’s response demonstrated their excellent communication and conflict resolution skills.

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  • A behavioral question about a time the interviewee had successfully managed a team helped the interviewer assess the interviewee’s leadership and teamwork abilities.
  • A hypothetical question about how the interviewee would improve a specific aspect of the company’s operations showcased the interviewee’s strategic thinking and innovative ideas.

Common Mistakes to Avoid

Pitfalls to Avoid When Asking Questions

* Asking leading questions that suggest the desired answer.

  • Interrupting the interviewee or not giving them enough time to respond.
  • Asking irrelevant or overly personal questions.
  • Being disrespectful or unprofessional in tone or demeanor.

Consequences of Asking Leading Questions

* Biasing the interviewee’s responses and compromising the objectivity of the interview.

  • Making the interviewee feel uncomfortable or intimidated.
  • Damaging the credibility of the interviewer and the organization.

Importance of Being Respectful and Professional

* Treat the interviewee with respect and courtesy.

  • Maintain a professional demeanor throughout the interview.
  • Create a positive and comfortable atmosphere for the interviewee.

Preparing for the Interview

Steps for Preparing Questions

* Research the company and the specific role you’re applying for.

  • Identify key skills and experiences required for the job.
  • Prepare a list of open-ended, clarifying, and probing questions that align with the job requirements.

Potential Questions to Ask

* Can you describe the day-to-day responsibilities of this role?

  • What are the company’s goals for this position over the next year?
  • How does the company support employee growth and development?

Mock Interview to Practice Asking Questions

* Conduct a mock interview with a friend, family member, or career counselor.

  • Practice asking your prepared questions and observe the interviewer’s reactions.
  • Seek feedback to improve your questioning skills and overall interview performance.

Advanced Questioning Techniques

STAR Method for Questioning

* Situation: Describe the specific situation or challenge.


Explain the task or responsibility you were given.


Detail the specific actions you took to address the situation.


Describe the outcome or result of your actions.

Benefits of Using the GROW Model

* Goal: Identify the specific goal or objective you’re trying to achieve.


Assess the current situation and identify any obstacles or challenges.

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Ultimately, asking thoughtful questions demonstrates your engagement and sets you apart as a proactive candidate.


Explore different options and potential solutions to address the goal.


Determine the specific actions you will take to achieve the goal.

Effective Questioning Sequences

* Start with a broad, open-ended question to gather general information.

  • Follow up with clarifying questions to seek specific details.
  • Ask probing questions to explore the interviewee’s perspectives and motivations.
  • End with a summarizing question to recap the key points of the discussion.

    Outcome Summary: Asking Good Questions In An Interview

    Asking good questions in an interview

    Asking good questions in interviews is a skill that can be learned and mastered with practice. By following the tips and techniques Artikeld in this guide, you can improve your interviewing skills and increase your chances of success.

Remember, the goal of asking good questions is to gain valuable information and build rapport. By approaching interviews with a curious and engaged mindset, you can create a positive and productive experience for both yourself and the other person.

Query Resolution

What are some tips for asking good open-ended questions?

Open-ended questions are those that cannot be answered with a simple yes or no. They encourage the interviewee to provide more detailed and informative answers. Some tips for asking good open-ended questions include:

  • Start with “what,” “why,” “how,” or “tell me about.”
  • Avoid leading questions or questions that assume a particular answer.
  • Be specific and clear about what you’re asking.
  • Give the interviewee enough time to think and respond.

What are some common mistakes to avoid when asking questions in interviews?

Some common mistakes to avoid when asking questions in interviews include:

  • Asking questions that are too vague or general.
  • Asking questions that are too personal or intrusive.
  • Asking questions that are irrelevant to the job or the interview.
  • Interrupting the interviewee or talking over them.
  • Asking questions that you could easily find the answer to yourself.

How can I prepare for asking good questions in interviews?

There are a few things you can do to prepare for asking good questions in interviews:

  • Research the company and the position you’re interviewing for.
  • Identify the key skills and experience that the employer is looking for.
  • Brainstorm a list of questions that you want to ask.
  • Practice asking your questions out loud.
  • Be prepared to follow up on the interviewee’s answers.

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