Smart job hunters know it’s best to focus on the needs of employers instead of their own during hiring. But if you do that, how do you figure out whether a job is a good fit for you?
It’s a matter of timing and how you frame questions.
Betty’s job search was going well. She had a second interview for a position that sounded interesting. In her first interview she’d focused on the employer’s needs. Now she needed to figure out whether the job would meet her needs without turning the employer off.
One of her top priorities was to avoid a micromanager boss. Her current boss was constantly breathing down her neck. That’s why she was job hunting.
In the second interview she said to her potential boss: “I can tell from everything you’ve said that quality is very important to you. How do you go about insuring your subordinates do a good job?”
He said he outlined exactly how he wanted things done, and checked on them, frequently. He lamented that to get things done right he often had to do them himself.
He sounded like Betty’s current boss. She was offered the job and declined, grateful she’d avoided a repeat of her present situation.
She’d done many things well. She waited until the second interview to address her own needs, then devised an empathetic, open-ended question to get the information she sought.
Betty had mastered the art of figuring out whether a position fit her needs, without jeopardizing the offer.
(The opinions expressed are not necessarily those of St. Louis Public Radio.)