Tagged: The Muse

Interview Questions For Your Potential Boss

To be a credible candidate for a job you must ask questions at the interview.  Sometimes the interviewer would be your boss and that can be intimidating.  However, its also an opportunity to learn more about how she or he leads.  Asking the right questions can give you insight into what your work life would be like if you accepted this position.

Here’s a copy of an article from The Muse

10 Questions to Ask in Your Next Job Interview to Avoid (Another) Toxic Boss

by Alyse Kalish

If you’re reading this, chances are you’re finally getting out of an unhealthy work environment. Good for you! You deserve to work with someone who treats you well.

That said, you certainly don’t want to make the same mistake again and end up working under someone who’s just as bad (or worse) than the last manager you had. As you’re job searching, make sure you ask these 10 crucial interview questions to get to the bottom of what it would be like to report to your potential new boss.

If the Interviewer Is Your Potential Boss

1. How Would You Describe Your Ideal Employee?

Whatever they say, take it to heart and make sure you genuinely fit into what they’re looking for—if you don’t, that’s a giveaway you won’t get along or enjoy working with them.

2. How Do You Like to Give Constructive Criticism?

Make sure they actually do give their team feedback (you don’t want to work somewhere where you’ll never learn and improve) but also express care and concern when doing so.

The point of giving it is not only to help make their job easier (less oversight needed), but also to help you grow. So if they respond with, “Calling people out in front of the whole company to teach them a lesson?” Definitely a red flag.

3. What’s the Process for Reviewing and Evaluating Employees?

Related to the one above: Is there a proper employee review cycle in place? Does it seem like they regularly evaluate and course-correct employee performance? And, do they seem to care about helping employees set and achieve their career goals?

4. How Long Has Your Current Team Been in Place?

Search their answer for any signs of high turnover or conflict. Were there legitimate reasons why their team has shifted? Do they avoid bringing up specifics?

5. How Would Your Direct Reports Describe Your Management Style?

This is a self-awareness test for your interviewer. They should be able to show that their direct reports feel properly managed without sounding egotistical or disengaged.

6. Who Are Your Leadership Role Models?

And ask them why they chose those people—this gives you a sense of what leadership tactics they respect and want to emulate.

7. How Does Your Team Unwind After a Stressful Period or Celebrate a Success?

This is a great way to get a sense of how they value work-life balance and how they acknowledge their team’s accomplishments. They should have some response to this.

If the Interviewer Works With Your Potential Boss

8. What’s [Boss’ Name]’s Management Style Like?

Look for hidden clues here. Do they sound supportive but not a micromanager? Respectful but motivating? And, does the person you’re speaking with seem to like their management style?

9. What’s Your Favorite Part of Working With [Boss’ Name]?

Do they brag about how awesome it is to work with so-and-so, or is their response vague and unimpressive? Take note.

10. How Would You Describe the Team Culture?

Some things you might look out for include how people work together and communicate, how your potential boss is involved in that culture, and how people get along both inside and outside the office.

Two other factors come into play here.

One is body language and nonverbal cues—pay attention to how people respond to your questions and if they seem turned off by them. A long pause can say wonders.

And the other is your own standards and values. I could easily say that X or Y response is a definite no, but at the end of the day everyone is looking for a different kind of work environment and manager.

So, before you enter any interview, make sure you’re clear on what you want in a boss so you can properly assess whether the person you’re interviewing fits the mold. If you’re not sure, think about what qualities you admire in other leaders, past bosses, and mentors (and which ones you don’t).

Finally, if you do smell something fishy during your interview process, consider reaching out to former employees or people in your network who work with or know of this person and ask for their off-the-record opinion.

It can feel awkward, but remember: You’ll have to work with this person every day, five days a week. So the more you know, the more informed your decision will be.

Lets talk about company culture and create a list of questions to ask about the job when the interviewer is from HR.  610-212-6679 or stephanie@accessguidance.com

From The Muse: 53 Ways To Get A Job By Graduation

The job search plan you create should cover these bases:

Under Pressure

1. Create and refine your job search plan

2. Strategize your networking

3. Keep adding the most-needed skills in your field

4. Expand your job search criteria

5. Polish your professional online presence


I’m not going to recount all 53 things you should do if you are a college student looking for your first post-graduation job but you can read them all in the following post.


How To Love What You Do: Advice For Everyone Who Works

Job change is scary for everyone but your are not only happier but more effective if you love what you do.

Love What You Do and You'll Never Work A Day
Love What You Do and You’ll Never Work A Day

4 Career Lessons You Should Learn
By Christie Mims

Dear Younger Self,

I know—right now your career seems reasonably good. Maybe you’ve got lots of disposable income from your fancy, high-powered job.

Or you’re getting promoted left and right.

Perhaps, you finally figured out the right brand of jeans for you (and most important: You can afford it!).

If only you weren’t so miserable.

Stuck. Trapped. Lost. Daydreaming of a time when you’ll magically wake up and have a job that involves wearing a tiara and asking the waiter to “bring the drinks round shortly.”

Mostly, you are scared. Scared that this is your life. That you’ll be stuck in a job like this forever. That you’ll spend most of your time working, and the rest daydreaming of vacations you want to take when you aren’t sitting at your desk but don’t have time for, because hello—your job!

Well, I’m writing from the future to tell you that it will get better.

But to help move the “getting better” along faster—here’s some hard-earned wisdom, from someone who’s been there, done that.
1. It’s OK to Want Something Different in Your Career

That doesn’t make you ungrateful or foolish, or flaky. It just makes you honest.

I was a fancy suit for many years, and when I was 30 I feel so guilty about wanting a different job. I had great co-workers, awesome clients, and worked for a good company. But yet—it wasn’t enough for me.

So I spent a lot of time squashing down my feelings and mainlining bad TV like it was medicine. Real Housewives? Yes, more please. (Note: That did not make me feel better.)

The truth is that career happiness and fulfillment comes from enjoying your work. Feeling engaged, excited, competent, and valued. It doesn’t come from money. Or from a fancy title.

I’ve had both—and neither made me feel better at the end of the day.

Colorful-Backpacks-for-school__IMG_8492-150x150Listen, you are great at many things, and so many people can benefit from your skills. So why not use them doing something that allows you to have a real impact, rather than just be an empty suit?

It’s okay to want to have an impact. The world needs what you have to offer, no matter how small or large. Isn’t that better than just showing up day after day feeling useless? (Answer: yes.)
2. Stuff Matters a Lot Less When You Love Your Work

I’m the first to say: Nice restaurants and trips to Europe? Sign me up please!

However, I used to think that I couldn’t live without certain things like fancy shoes or expensive trips, or the option to basically buy what I wanted, when I wanted it. So, obviously I needed to stay at my job, or one just like it, and not even contemplate doing something else.

Opportunities that came my way I instantly dismissed, thinking: “Well, how would I support myself doing that?”

I didn’t bother to do the research to learn what certain jobs actually paid. I assumed I knew the score, and that therefore I had to stay stuck. Brilliant, right?

What I didn’t realize until I started my own business was that all the stuff that I absolutely needed was just a distraction from the job that I didn’t want to do anymore. When I was focused on creating my company, I wasn’t interested in fancy vacations anymore.

I didn’t need it. I felt good from the work—and the distractions just faded away.

I’m not saying that you don’t need a certain amount of money to live—obviously you do! And that number is different for each of us. What I am saying is that you may be surprised at how little you need when your attention is taking up by work you love.

Repeat after me: Don’t let the stuff keep you stuck. It won’t make you happy.
3. The World Is Open to You

Being a grown adult with a job or two under your belt is the best. You’re old enough to have work experience and some money, but still young enough that you can do almost anything.

A Job You Love Is The Gift You Give Yourself
A Job You Love Is The Gift You Give Yourself

Go you!

Even if you’ve spent tons of money on an expensive education, or years in a career field—please don’t fall into the trap of thinking you are too old or too invested to change.

No matter how old you are, I will say: You are so young. You’ve got so many more years of work ahead of you.

So stop taking world-weary sighs and start looking around and thinking about the impact you want to have on the world in those years. People will listen to you and respect your skills now—and you are smart, so you can train to do almost anything. Sure, it will take work—but you’ve worked hard before and I know you can do it again.

This is your time. Make the most of it.
4. Fear Is Only an Indication That You’re Onto Something Great

Nothing stops you in your tracks like fear.

But I’d like you to think about this a little differently today: It’s not a reason to immediately shun an idea or dismiss an opportunity. It’s actually an indicator that you are climber-299018_640onto something interesting and different, and that’s worth exploring.

I was never more terrified of anything than quitting my job and leaving a supportive company for the great unknown: working for myself and building my business.

It kept me up at night, it scared the bejesus out of me, and it made me feel alive.

Most importantly: That keep-me-up-at-night feeling made me thoughtful. I was afraid of starting a business, so I thought through what I would need to make the transition and I got some training and support to fill in the cracks.

I was afraid of not being able to pay my rent, so I downsized my apartment for a few months to save money and reduce my stress level.

I was worried I’d be a failure so I studied carefully, and I put together a plan of action to boost my confidence and success.

In the end, it was the fear that kept me sharp and motivated. Don’t be afraid of that feeling, it’s often how big career changes happen—and it’s part of being human.

So, I’m here to say that you are amazing, brilliant, capable, and awesome. You have something great to offer the world—the world needs you.