How to Make Sure You Win the Job: Interview the Interviewer

interview the interviewerInterview the interviewer? Really?

It’s a pretty well-known fact that every candidate should bring in questions to the interview to look smart and invested in the outcome.

But interviewing the interviewer, too?

Despite the perception that the employer “has all the power” in the interview, and no matter how badly you want the position, there’s one more variable: Do you even want to work there?

Key clues happen during interviews, especially with the hiring manager, that can help you understand what it might be like to work at that company. Even more importantly, there are cues as to whether you’d even like the person who would be your supervisor.

Want to get to the heart of company culture? Want to understand management styles? Want to win the job offer?

Then you must interview the interviewer. And to do that, you must learn the answers to these questions…

Do You Like the Person?

Chemistry is often cited as a core value for companies. And that chemistry begins when you decide you like someone. If you walk into an interview, and there’s a weird vibe, listen to your gut. Intuition plays a huge role here… if you don’t like them, there’s probably a reason why.

Do They Treat You with Respect?

How they ask you questions in the interview and their reactions to your responses can tell a lot about a person. When you are interviewing an interviewer, you are gauging future treatment in the job by how they treat you now.

Do They Treat Others with Respect?

Side looks and visible tension between interviewers can also be indicators of problems.

You might be treated well simply because in interviews, everyone is usually on their best behavior. But personal conflicts and lack of collegiate respect can speak volumes about how you can expect to be treated.

How Do They Value the Contributions of Team Members?

Interviewing the interviewer and looking for signs as to how employers might value the work done by their employees also can be an indicator of a green light or a red flag warning.

How Do They Handle Difficult Situations or Mistakes?

No one likes bosses that dump on them, so interviewing the interviewer to understand how they handle challenges can also tell you whether they will stand by their employees, or hang you out to dry.

How Do They Build Team Morale and Synergy?

Asking questions to find out how motivated and excited they are about their job can also reveal volumes about how they build empowering workplaces.

Be Smart

Don’t be afraid to interview the interviewer during your next audition for a job opening.

An interview has always been a two-way street.

You have every right to turn down a job that looks great on paper… but in the interview, proves to be a train wreck.

Be smart.

Be vigilant.

And be confident enough to interview the interviewer.


For this post, YouTern thanks our friends at Pathfinder.




Dawn Rasmussen 3About the Author: Dawn Rasmussen, CMP is President of Pathfinder Writing and Career Services, a provider of results-oriented résumé, cover letter, and job search coaching services. Dawn is also the official “Get the Job” columnist for One+ Magazine distributed to over 26,000 meeting professionals worldwide and, a job resource site for creative and marketing professionals. Dawn is also a career expert on – a top 10 world-ranked career advice blog. Follow Dawn on Twitter!



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