|Careers & Employment Information|
Hey, You Cant Ask Me That! (How to Respond to Inappropriate Job Interview Questions)
I received the following questions from a visitor to my website recently: "How should I respond to inappropriate questions such as: (1) Do you have a stable home life? (2) Tell me about your personal situation. Are these inappropriate questions? It has been so long since I interviewed for a job, your suggestions about the most helpful responses would be appreciated!"
Those are, indeed, inappropriate questions that should NOT be asked at an interview.
Various federal, state, and local laws regulate the questions a prospective employer can ask you. An employer's questions - on the job application, in the interview, or during the testing process - must be related to the job for which you are applying.
That does not mean, however, that you will never be asked inappropriate questions. Some companies have poor HR support, some interviewers are untrained and unaware of inappropriate or illegal questions, and some even ask them knowing they should not.
You won't have much chance of getting the job if you respond to such questions by saying, "Hey, that's an inappropriate question. You can't ask me that!"
So you have a few options. First, you can answer the question. Even if it's inappropriate to ask, there's nothing that says you can't answer it. If you choose to do so, realize that you are giving information that is not job-related. You could harm your chances by giving the "wrong" answer.
Or you could respond with something like, "How would my answer to that question directly relate to my ability to perform in this position?" If you keep your tone non-confrontational, courteous and upbeat, they may realize they've goofed by asking such a question without getting upset at you for pointing out their mistake. Depending on how they respond, you may feel more comfortable answering.
The best strategy, I believe, is to figure out and address their TRUE CONCERN. When they ask something like, "Do you have a stable personal life?" they may be trying to protect themselves from a bad situation that they've had to deal with in the past (former employee whose personal problems interfered with his/her ability to do the job). So what they really want to know is, will YOU be a reliable employee who can be counted upon to show up and do your job effectively, regardless of any personal problems you may have.
So without directly answering their question, try to address their underlying concern. In this instance you might say, "My career is very important to me. I'm fully committed to performing at my highest level at all times, and don't allow any kind of distractions to interfere with that. I'll deliver the results you're looking for."
If you're not sure what their true concern is, ask something like "Could you please rephrase or elaborate on your question? I want to make sure I address your concern."
Please realize that many interviewers are untrained and therefore unaware that a question they might ask to break the ice -- such as "Do you have any kids?" -- is inappropriate. Yes, this question may be an attempt to determine if you have child-care issues that could interfere with your job... but it's MORE likely that the interviewer is innocently trying to find something he/she has in common with you.
In the end, it's basically a judgment call on your part. If you feel the interviewer has no legitimate reason to ask an inappropriate question, and you do not want to answer it, say "I'm sorry, but I don't see how that has any relevance to my ability to do this job." You might run the risk of losing the job, but if your gut instinct is telling you there's something amiss, you wouldn't want to work for that person anyway.
Here's a list of some questions -- the wrong way, and the right way, to obtain legitimate information:
Inappropriate: Are you a U.S. citizen?
Inappropriate: How old are you?
Inappropriate: What's your marital status? Do you have children?
Inappropriate: How much do you weigh? Do you have any disabilities?
Inappropriate: Have you ever been arrested?
Bonnie Lowe is author of the popular Job Interview Success System and free information-packed ezine, "Career-Life Times." Find those and other powerful career-building resources and tips at her website: http://www.best-interview-strategies.com.
This RSS feed URL is deprecated, please update. New URLs can be found in the footers at https://news.google.com/news
Is your adviser a micromanager? When to take your experiment undercover - Chemical & Engineering News
Hiring opportunity: Seasonal workers will see more jobs, higher pay this holiday season - AZCentral.com
Japan's chemical industry struggles to find people with science backgrounds, especially bilingual ones - Chemical & Engineering News
Telecommuting Website (Part One)
"I've heard you talk about building a website to get telecommuting jobs. Can you tell me more about this, and how I would do it?"If you all listen to WAHMTalkRadio.
Dont Be Defeated - Be Empowered
Taking a job out of fear and desperation will never satisfy you for very long, nor will it last all that long either, and before you know it your back to square one. As I said; a job is nothing more than "just over broke", and who wants to live like that!I realize how desperate situations in life can be; I lived that existance for many years, fighting and struggling just to make ends meet, if I was lucky.
Prepare for YOUR Future now --
All Presidential candidates (before and after) make all kinds of promises about YOUR 'social security' when running for the top job. Regardless of the promises, YOU are the one who has to live or die by the future plans made on your behalf.
Job or Career
At this present time I have a job. It pays some of my bills, and again I have a job.
Job Interviews and The Secret of Selling Yourself
A very effective and persuasive tactic when selling something is to promote its benefits as well as its features.Very simply, features are what something has; benefits are what those features do for you.
Negotiating Skills: How to Obtain the Salary You Want
Salary negotiating is an important topic that must be addressed prior to your initial interview with a prospective employer. Knowing your bottom rate, and being able to live with it [or on it?] is an important thing for candidates to uncover before the first interview.
Confidence Is Critical to YOUR Success....
Make EYE contact when you look at another person. Look at them!! Don't look down at your shoes or away from the other person.
Telecommuting Website (Part Two)
Last article I discussed why a telecommuter would benefit from starting a website, and what you should include on the website. This article, I'm going to cover how to market the website and the basics of getting one set up.
Pre-Interview Web Research
You have obtained an interview -- congratulations! You feel prepared to discuss your strengths, your accomplishments, your willingness to work hard and learn quickly, and your ability to fit seamlessly into the employer's needs. But.
Signs of a Healthy Work Environment
There's no denying that a healthy work environment is a top concern for most employees. Review any employee satisfaction survey and you're apt to find this issue among the top five concerns of your staff - sometimes above the issue of pay.
How to Conquer Job Hunting Apathy
Jack, downsized from his last job, was frozen in a place called Apathy. Had been for months now.
It Takes Time
The story goes that after one of Ludwig van Beethoven's performances, several people were offering him their congratulations, when one woman commented, "I wish God had bestowed me with such genius." "It isn't genius, madam, nor is it magic.
Who Do I Have To Kill To Get A Job?
I have had more than my amount of trouble in getting a job. I did everything I was supposed to do.
Job Search: Age-Proofing Your Resume
Older job hunters fear interviews where their age cannot be concealed and where an initial response of dismay on an interviewer's face, quickly hidden, confirms their anticipation of discrimination. The mature job seeker often prefers the anonymity of mailed resumes, e-mailed inquiries, internet applications, and telephone contacts.
Your Salary: What Are You Worth?
Why is it a good idea to determine your worth? Whether you plan to stay at your current job or seek employment elsewhere, your assessment of your worth can become a bargaining chip should you choose to negotiate for higher compensation. It's a reference point on your way to improving not only your standard of living but your sense of self as well.
You Are Lucky in Your Career!
You Are Lucky in Being Satisfied in Your CareerJust for fun let's you and I, reader, consider that you are satisifed with your current career.It's good to find out why.
Success at Work: Techniques: Computer Literacy
It's hard to believe that there are people in today's workforce who don't know how to use a computer. In today's society, being computer illiterate is equivalent to being functionally illiterate.
How To Resign Gracefully
Once a new job has been accepted, you need to consider the timing of your resignation. Since two weeks' notice is considered the norm, make sure your resignation properly coincides with your start date at the new company.
How To Become A Computer Consultant
Have you ever wanted to become a computer consultant, but you weren't sure if you could cut it? Do you have a basic understanding of computer-systems, strong problem-solving skills, and a desire to help other people? If so, then you already possess the main abilities and traits that you need to become a computer consultant.In this article, we'll look at the business opportunities for computer consultants, the reasons why there will almost always be a strong need for good computer consultants, and what it takes for you to achieve success if you want to become a computer consultant.
The Perils Of Employment: Are You About To Be Let Go?
From the moment you are born and you take your first breath, you begin to die.It's just a fact of life.
|home | site map|