3 Questions You Shouldn’t Ask During an Interview
March 9, 2021

Landing an interview is an accomplishment in and of itself, but landing the interview does not mean you’ll get the job. It’s the perfect opportunity to show your potential employer that you aren’t just an impressive professional on paper. However, if you go into an interview unprepared, it can also severely hurt your chances of being hired.

It’s incredibly important to arrive at your interview prepared with strategic questions that will help you stand out. There’s plenty of articles telling you what to say, but not as many telling you what not to say. So BrandResumes is here to help.


1. Do not ask about salary or benefits

This question is a common mistake made by many job seekers, which is completely understandable. Of course you’d like to know what you could potentially be making in your new role. It’s a fair question; however, it isn’t the question to be asking right off the bat.

If you ask about pay or benefits early on, it may come across to the hiring managers that you’re assuming you’ll get the role. It also could insinuate that you might be less likely to accept a role that does not meet your salary expectations (which is also a valid reason, but not appropriate for your first conversation).

Salary and benefits should generally not be discussed until you’re offered the role. Then, negotiations can begin. You can read more about negotiating your salary in this article.

2. Do not ask about vacation time or flexible hours

Once again, we completely understand why you want to ask these questions. However, we urge you to consider how these questions appear from a hiring manager’s perspective.

For you, these questions are important as they can provide you with more context as to what your potential work-life balance would be like. However, for a hiring manager, it could come off as you’re not passionate about the role and that you may be likely to call out frequently.

Again, we’re not saying this is at all why you’re asking this question, but they can’t assume your exact reason behind asking.


3. Do not ask any questions that you should have known the answers to going into the interview

Okay, we know this one is vague, but it’s also a very important point. As we said earlier, it’s incredibly important to conduct research prior to your interview. Here are a few examples of things you should know before you interview:

  • The competition
  • The company’s mission
  • A basic knowledge of changes happening in the company
  • Company leaders

The hiring managers won’t expect you to know anything and everything about the company, but they do expect you to have done at least a quick Google search and to have browsed their company site. Again, a lack of research can appear as disinterest or laziness. Do your research!

If you ever have to question whether or not you should ask, it’s probably already a good sign that you shouldn’t ask the question. Now that you know what not to ask, here’s an article on what questions you should ask. If you’re still struggling to land interviews, you can read this article as well to learn why. BrandResumes not only has plenty of articles on interview tips, but we also offer interview coaching. Good luck with those interviews!


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By Emily Provost

Emily is BrandResumes' Content Specialist and is an Associate Resume Writer. She completed her Bachelor of Arts in Publishing Studies with double minors in Marketing and Journalism from Hofstra University. She has had editorial experience working as an editor for various publications from Hofstra and worked as a writing tutor for undergraduate students.

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