For many of us, it’s the one of the worst parts of a job interview – the part where the hiring manager asks you if you have any questions. If you say no, you sound like you don’t care about the job, or will take whatever they give you when it’s time to negotiate your salary. If you say yes, well, you better have some good questions in mind. This week’s roundup looks at a few possible questions to ask the hiring manager, plus issues around figuring out coverage during vacation, and tips on how to build your personal brand.
(Photo Credit: BAMCorp/Flickr)
The blogging team at job-search app creator CareerShift came up with five questions to get you the information you need, impress the interviewer, and close out your conversation in style, including this question that addresses the corporate-cultural piece:
What’s your favorite work-related event? Workplace culture is a big part of any job. Events are only a small piece of the culture puzzle, but they can tell you a lot about the office and the team. From weekly happy hours to scavenger hunts and team building activities, office events show what potential coworkers are interested in and how close-knit the team is. After all the serious interview questions, asking about company events ends the interview on a fun and lighter tone.
More here, and even if none of them strike your fancy, they should get you thinking in the right direction and help you come up with your own.
Alison Green at Ask a Manager: Should My Manager Cover My Work While I’m on Vacation?
A reader writes in to get Green’s take on an issue that many of us have probably wondered about, in this era of overwork and understaffing: Whose job is it to cover assignments, when an employee is out?
For background, this person worked as a project manager. She or he had no direct reports, so there wasn’t a go-to person to take over deliverables during the vacation. After much scrambling and asking of favors, the reader covered most bases, but still had a few things that needed to happen during his or her absence.
On my last day before vacation, I put together a single email documenting each of the key things that needed to happen, with all of the handoffs listed and people involved, and sent it to my manager. I specifically asked him if he could follow up on a few of the items that were either super urgent or that I feared might hit a sticking point somewhere …Well, my manager didn’t like this at ALL. He told me in no uncertain terms that I should be assigning somebody else to follow up on my work, period, and that he was NOT responsible for my work.
The question is, should the boss ultimately cover these things, or was the reader out of line? Green’s response offers insight for anyone who’s ever tried to plan PTO and found themselves without helpful minions – or even willing colleagues with time on their hands.
“From websites to blogs to social media, the Internet provides tremendous opportunities to leverage your personal brand,” writes Shoemake. “The tricky part is, it also provides tremendous opportunities to damage your personal brand as well.”
Her tips will help you build a brand that will get you hired and keep your career headed in the right direction.
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