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How to get answers to awkward questions you want to ask.

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In the lead up to an interview, we all have questions we really want to be answered but avoid asking as it could make things uncomfortable. Here are 5 diplomatic ways to get answers to these questions whilst limiting any potential awkwardness by using tact, flattery, and empathy.

1.) Awkward Question- Why is the person currently performing this role leaving?

Suggested Alternative- What is the background to this role becoming vacant?

2.) Awkward Question- Why has this role been advertised for so many months and still vacant?

Suggested Alternative- I suspect this role has gathered quite a bit of interest but often these types of roles can be difficult to fill. Are you finding the same thing?

3.) Awkward Question- Why have quite a few people left in the past few years?

Suggested Alternative- I’ve noticed over the years quite a bit of movement in our sector, particularly at my level- is this something the Company is also experiencing?

4.) Awkward Question- When will you let me know if I’ve got the job?

Suggested Alternative- Do you have many other candidates to see for this role and ideally when are you looking for someone to start?

5.) Awkward Question- What is the salary for this job?

Suggested Alternative- The market rate for this salary is often X amount but this can vary from company to company. What is the salary range for this job NB it is rare for a company not to discuss the salary before an interview so this is a polite way of bringing up during the interview if this hasn’t already been brought up.