Questions you should ask
How staying curious can help you land a job.
By Torin Ellis
August 2, 2018
He acknowledged that all hasn’t been easy since returning home, and that moving forward requires his constant attention, self-motivation, and maintaining a position of curiosity and willingness to listen and learn.
He has written books.
He has a Documentary on Netflix — one of the most popular on the platform, by the way.
He is now in his 9th year post-prison, and you could say that his life is moving in the right direction.
Who am I referring to? Ricky Donnell “Freeway Rick” Ross.
Ross was recently in Baltimore speaking to a group of entrepreneurs about life before, during, and after prison. He was dressed in jeans, a tee-shirt, and a hoodie, candidly sharing with his audience as if having a conversation — no props, no slides, just his experiences. For 30 minutes, he held their full attention because he was authentic.
And, because he operated from a space of curiosity.
Even as the speaker, Freeway Rick exhibited a sense of amazement, openness, and joy in post-prison life — in being able to do something as simple as drink orange juice from a local retailer in Baltimore. He acknowledged that all hasn’t been easy since returning home, and that moving forward requires his constant attention, self-motivation, and maintaining a position of curiosity and willingness to listen and learn.
His talk is the inspiration for this blog post: a reminder to remain curious and engaged in your job search through asking questions.
Preparing for an interview includes preparing good questions for the interviewer.
Oftentimes the candidate arrives for a job interview poorly prepared, forgetting that an interview is like a conversation: it requires both give and take. Usually, they are just happy to have been invited there, have done little to prepare, and have no or only predictable questions when it is their turn to control the ‘conversation.’ Questions like, ‘how much will I be paid’ or ‘do we get a discount on x’ or (my favorite) ‘what do ya’ll do here?’
Not one of those questions paints you as a star candidate. Interviews are conversations that build rapport, showcase experience and success, and convince an interviewer that you are the absolute best person for the team (all in about 30 minutes).
“So, do you have any questions for me?”
At some point the interviewer will say “do you have any questions for me?” That moment is your last and most important opportunity to shine and show mastery. Here’s the best question strategy for your interview, with examples:
- Two questions that isolate your duties: “What does a typical day look like in this role?”
- One question that uncovers the ideal person or personality for the job: “What kind of qualities would an ideal candidate have that would make them highly successful in this role?”
- One question that targets the challenges others in the role have faced: “What have you seen as a significant challenge for previous holders of this position?”
- One question that assures that you have answered ALL of their questions completely: “Is there anything else you would like me to share in order to help you make your decision?”
This strategy sets you up to nail the interview and show that you are a valuable player. There are costs like background checks, uniforms, licensing, equipment, and badges associated with hiring a new employee. Whether it be $100 or $1000 to bring on a new hire, employers DO NOT want to waste money. Show them from “Hello” to “So, do you have any more questions for me?” that you are the very best decision and that you are worth every penny it costs to hire you.
Join us again next month for more insights. Tag a friend, share the article, talk about it in the beauty salon and barber shop. The entire 70MillionJobs team and advisors care about your progress and want the very best for each of you. Take advantage of our experiences and when applicable apply them to your situation.
Diversity Maverick and Strategist // SiriusXM Contributor // Published of Rip The Resume — Creative, high voltage, ready to pursue results.
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