10 Toxic Interview Questions to Avoid at All Costs!


We all have pet peeves, little things that get under our skin and make it harder to move forward. For hiring managers, these 10 questions are considered major turn-offs. With a little prep on your part beforehand, you can avoid these “interview killers” and stay on-track to landing that new job:

1) Don’t ask for information you could have easily found with a quick online (Google, Linkedin, Company Website) search. The stronger your knowledge, the clearer the signal it sends that you want a position with THIS company.

2) Don’t ask if you can change the job details, the schedule, or the salary. You need to prove 100% fit with the role first, negotiate salary only once an offer’s on the table, and work out scheduling specifics once you actually have the job! Don’t get the order confused.

3) Don’t ask too many questions about the interviewer’s background. Some initial questions about the work they do and their experience at the company is fine, then move on.

4) Don’t ask about pay, time off, benefits, etc. during the initial interview. This can make you come across as a “WIIFM” (“What’s in it for me?”) candidate.

5) Don’t ask “What does your company do?” YOU SHOULD ALREADY KNOW THIS!

6) Don’t ask “If I’m hired, when can I start applying for other positions in the company?”

7) Don’t ask how quickly you can be promoted. Again, this is putting the cart before the horse. Succeed at the job first before entertaining thoughts of promotion.

8) Don’t ask “Do you do background checks?” Assume they will.

9) Don’t ask about gossip you’ve heard or come across online.

10) Don’t ask if the company monitors e-mail or Internet usage.

1 Easy LinkedIn Profile Tweak for WAY More Recruiter Results!


If you’re in ACTIVE JOB SEARCH MODE, then you MUST activate LinkedIn’s “Share Career Interests with Recruiters” feature.

Simply put, it will IMMEDIATELY put you on the radar of major industry recruiters, offer a glimpse of what types of roles you’re pursuing (and what skills you’re bringing to the table), and do it all without blasting out notifications to your existing network. Oh, and did I mention it’s FREE?

Here’s how:

Step 1: Sign into LinkedIn and click on the “Jobs” tab


Step 2: Now Click on the “Preferences” tab


Step 3: Scroll down to the bottom of the page and you’ll see a “Share career interests with recruiters?” option


Step 4: Fill out the questions, then click on the “Share your job preferences” option at the bottom.


Boom! You’ve just sent out a powerful “blast” to recruiters about your job interests, and increased your visibility with them for the next 90 days.

It’s Time to Turbocharge Your Career. Are You Ready?


Pros and Cons of Working with an EXTERNAL RECRUITER

A photo by SpaceX. unsplash.com/photos/TV2gg2kZD1o

In last week’s post, I gave you a rundown of the pros and cons of working with an internal recruiter. This week we’ll be talking about EXTERNAL RECRUITERS, and what they can offer you.

First, here’s how an external recruiter operates:

- External recruiters are usually paid a percentage of the employees’ annual salary as a “finder’s fee” for bringing a hired candidate to an employer. Employers will often engage more than 1 recruiting firm to source qualified candidates from, so competition can be fierce.

-External recruiters will almost always handle the initial phone or face-to-face interview, and then it’s usually turned over to internal staff at the company. On rare occasions, they’ll manage the entire hiring process from start-to-finish.

Now let’s go over Pros and Cons:


-They have an outsider’s perspective, and can usually provide a “clear-eyed” view of what’s really going on at the company.

-They can offer crucial guidance on navigating personalities and company hiring issues to give you an edge over the competition.

-Your success means more money for them- that’s a POWERFUL motivator! Internal recruiters just don’t have the same level of incentive to get you hired.


-The same outsider mentality which can be a plus with a great external recruiter can also be a NEGATIVE with someone who’s not on top of the ball. Lack of knowledge about the company and key decision-makers can make it very difficult for you to get traction during the hiring process. This is why it’s crucial to listen and observe carefully during initial contact with an external recruiter- are they interested in YOU specifically, or is this one of dozens of calls they have on the books?

-To maximize their odds of placing a candidate, external recruiters will usually put forth multiple people for a job. As such, they may not promote you as aggressively.

-Some external recruiters may submit your resume for other open positions without your knowledge (or permission). This can cause unexpected problems. For example, if you’ve previously applied for a position independently, and then an external recruiter ALSO submits your candidacy for the same position, an employer may choose to skip you over entirely rather than deal with the headache of figuring out whether a commission is due to the recruiter on hiring. This is why SETTING CLEAR EXPECTATIONS are a must when working with an external recruiter.


-Ultimately, an external recruiter has the exact same goal as you: getting you placed quickly, and for MAXIMUM compensation.

-Be honest with them about potential vulnerabilities- they can play a big role in mitigating the fallout and strengthening the overall impact of your presentation.


A relationship with an external recruiter can pay off for years to come. If they succeed in landing you a job, be sure to send a handwritten thank you note. Connect with them on LinkedIn. Periodically touch base during holidays and during milestone moments in your career. And the best value-add of all? Refer colleagues to them!

Ready to take your career to the next level?