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Now that the job market appears gradually more optimistic, people are dusting off their resumes and preparing to head into interviews. Once things really turn around, however, it is likely that you won't be the only one applying for any given position. Many key members of organizations who have been working lean and waiting for the economic climate to improve may be flooding the job market simultaneously.

Interview Questions You Should Ask

Now that the job market appears gradually more optimistic, people are dusting off their resumes and preparing to head into interviews. Once things really turn around, however, it is likely that you won't be the only one applying for any given position. Many key members of organizations who have been working lean and waiting for the economic climate to improve may be flooding the job market simultaneously.

That means competition may be fiercer than ever when you head in for interviews in the near future, according to the experts at leading career management company Lee Hecht Harrison.

“The most important thing to remember is to be prepared,” said Sharon Winston, regional senior vice president of Lee Hecht Harrison's Western Region. “You should still emphasize your transferable skills and previous accomplishments, but remember to do your homework. Hiring managers want to hear what you can offer the company and an excellent way of proving that is going to the interview well versed in the major products and services of the organization, the parent company with which it is affiliated, and it's main competitors and key customers.”

Here are some suggestions for interview questions you should be asking from the experts at Lee Hecht Harrison:

– What are the company's plans for the future? Be sure not to ask anything that is readily available in the company literature, but take this opportunity to find out more about your potential employer during the interview. This indicates that you are interested in the long term, versus merely planning to use the position as a stepping stone to your next job.

– Does the company invest in the career development of its employees by offering leadership, educational or coaching programs? It is wise to avoid a barrage of questions regarding benefits packages, salary and vacation in the initial interview. However, many organizations strive to create an atmosphere of success and look to the future by preparing their key talent with opportunities for advancement and may be happy to discuss them with you.

– What is the company looking for in the right employee for this position? Ask about the short- and long-term goals hoped for in fulfilling this job and leverage your past experience and accomplishments to show that you would be a good fit.

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