This MBA Interview Preparation video will acquaint you with the best questions to ask the interviewer at the end of an interview round. Unfortunately, many applicants squander this opportunity of making an impression or conveying one's seriousness about the program. The pointers discussed in this video will allow you to gain an efficient approach for answering your interviewer some meaningful questions.
The Best Questions to Ask the Interviewer in the MBA Interview
Most MBA interviews end with the interviewer asking the candidate if he/she has any questions to ask. The purpose of allowing the candidate to ask a few questions is not just to provide them with the opportunity to clear up any doubts that they might have but also to give the interviewer one more avenue to evaluate the candidates. What type of questions the candidate asks the interviewers can provide a lot of valuable insight to them into how well the candidate has prepared for the interview and how much thought he/she has put into their decision to pursue an MBA from that specific business school. In this regard, what questions you ask will form the last impression that you will make on your interviewer and in an MBA interview, last impressions are actually a bit more important than first impressions because they heavily influence your interviewer's lasting thoughts on your candidature. So, do not make the typical MBA interview mistake of underestimating the importance of this part of the interview. In this article, we will cover the common mistakes made by most candidates and the correct approach to this part of the MBA interview.
The Most Common Mistakes
The most fundamental mistake to be made here is showing a lack of confidence; in every part of the MBA interview, it is vital to display a sense of readiness and conviction in what you are saying. If you do not sound ready when your interviewer asks if you have any questions, it will reflect poorly on you; as mentioned earlier, asking if the candidate has any questions to ask is a very common way to end MBA interviews, so your interviewer will expect you to have a few questions ready or to be confident that there is nothing more you need to know. Of course, the quality of the questions that you ask is of paramount importance. Many candidates ask the interviewer blatant questions that have no place in the interview stage of their MBA admissions; for example, "What concentrations does the school offer?" A candidate should have complete clarity on questions along these lines, concerned with basic information about the business school or MBA program, long before he/she sits for the MBA interview. Moreover, you should not ask the interviewer any information that could easily be looked up online, especially if it is featured on the business school's website. Asking the interviewer questions that you could easily look up on your own or should already have clarity on conveys that you have a casual attitude and have not duly researched the business school and MBA program that you are applying to; needless to say, this will have a significant negative impact on your interviewer's assessment. Another type of question that you should avoid asking is employment-related questions, such as "How difficult is it for international students to gain employment?". Asking employment-related questions can be seen as a turn-off, at this stage.
One serious misstep that many candidates make, while asking the interviewers questions, is inadvertently adopting a condescending tone. Questions such as "How did the MBA help you in your career?" are neither an appropriate nor matured response to the interviewer. One thing that you must, certainly, keep in mind while asking questions, is that an MBA interview is an evaluation, not a mentoring session. The purpose of every part of the conversation, including the questions that you ask, is to evaluate the strength of your candidature. So, you need to avoid asking "guidance seeking" questions, such as "What advice will you give me to make the most of my MBA experience?"; such questions are very generic and a bit beyond the scope of the conversation. The final mistake that we will discuss here is asking too many questions; remember, questioning your interviewer is only meant to be a short epilogue to your MBA interview and from the interviewer's perspective is more of a courtesy than anything else. Do not ask your interviewer an excessive amount of questions; this might turn into a reverse interview that would suggest that you do not understand exactly what is expected of you in an MBA interview and may also come across as discourteous. Two questions is a healthy number of questions to ask your interviewer; you can ask one question and one follow-up question, or two independent questions.
The Correct Approach
Most importantly, you should be well prepared for the interviewer to ask you if you have any questions; have one to three worthy questions ready to go, before you begin your MBA interview. Asking one or two questions would be ideal and asking three questions is the maximum limit. Be sure to ask highly specific questions that are related to the MBA program that you are applying to. The following is a list of potential subjects that you can ask questions on; please go through it carefully and see which subjects you can put together rich questions on:
Curriculum and Program Structure | Experiential Learning Programs | Centers of Excellence | Students' Activities | Exchange Programs | International Opportunities | Career Services | Community Service Opportunities | Networking Opportunities |
Your questions should be highly nuanced and ask for information that is not easily available; this will suggest that you have a deep interest in the particular business school and MBA program, have thoroughly researched the same, and are now looking for a deeper level of understanding that you cannot get by perusing simpler resources. Before beginning your answer, do not feel afraid to take a quick pause to gather your thoughts and plan out how to present your questions; it is perfectly fine to take about 20 seconds before responding to your interviewer. Taking this pause will also help you avoid thinking while talking; doing so can give the impression that you are ill-prepared or do not have confidence in what you are saying.
For a more complete understanding of MBA interview preparation, please read the other articles prepared by Experts' Global.