Informational Interview Questions
Informational interview questions are designed to get to know the subject of the interview quickly and efficiently. Informational interview questions can be used in a variety of interview situations, ranging from an interview for a potential employee to an interview of a celebrity. Developing a list of questions designed to bring information out of the subject of your interview can help ensure you get the most from any interview you perform.
- "Where were you born?" This question helps set the tone for an interview by providing personal information. This is often a two-part question, with "Where were you raised?" as part of the equation. Setting up a regional background for your subject can help provide critical information based on this context.
- "Why are you interested in this type of work?" This is an obvious question to ask if you are interviewing someone for a job. The information the answer to the question provides can be valuable in determining the intent of a prospective employee. It can tell you if a prospective employee is interested in the job specifically or motivated by money.
- "What did you like about your last job?" This is another informational question to ask of a prospective employee. How someone responds to this question can help you determine how he might talk about your company when you aren't around. The answer to the question, and the way in which the answer is phrased, can also help you determine personality.
- "When did you realize you wanted to be . . . ?" Fill in the blank with singer, actor, artist, politician or any other celebrity career. This is an informational question designed to bring out background history about a celebrity. It can help give you valuable background information on the celebrity you're interviewing.
- "Why you move from your last home/apartment?" This is an informational question a landlord can ask a potential tenant. It is designed to give information regarding the tenant's past relationship with landlords. If the answer to the question appears to highlight an issue between the tenant and previous landlord, you can use the information to determine if the tenant is worth the risk.
- "What is a typical work day?" This is a question you might ask a potential employer. The answer to the question can give you valuable information about the job and whether it sounds like something that is right for you. If the answer to the question is "the job is hectic and you'll often be working on your own," this may not be the job for you if you need a lot of supervisory input.
- "What is your favorite part of the job?" Another good question to ask a potential employer. Seeing the job from the perspective of someone who is already doing it can provide valuable information that can help you determine if the job is suitable.
- "How do you see yourself?" Asking this question of someone can provide information about the confidence level someone has. This question is often used by employers to get a feel for how a prospective employee feels she will be able to do the job in question.
- "What is your educational background?" This is an essential question that can provide valuable information regarding a prospective employee's qualifications. Even though the educational information is on the resume, an employer may be able to find additional skills or shortcomings by allowing a prospective employee to verbally lay out educational background.
- "re you a United States Citizen?" While you can't ask about race or country of origin for legal reasons, you can get the information you need to determine if someone is legally able to work in the United States by asking this question.