You’ve been at your best, answering a variety of questions, asking the questions you prepared in advance and demonstrating your interest in the opportunity. It is obvious that the process is winding down. Rather than just ending with a handshake and a smile, what are some ways to maximize the value of those last few moments?
One option is to ask the interviewer what single accomplishment at that company they are the most proud of and why. This lets them share something they feel passionately about and it provides you valuable insight into what the company values and how that potential new colleague thinks. It will differentiate you from other candidates because most won’t ask this question. The biggest decision you will have to make when you receive an offer is whether you feel this organization is a good fit for you. The interviewer’s response to this question will give you valuable insights.
If you are feeling very positive about the opportunity but are concerned that the interviewer may have a reservation, be bold. Ask “what concerns do you have about my candidacy for this position?” If you don’t ask, they will still have the concern and you’ve lost the opportunity to address it. At least this gives you the opportunity to address the concern head on and it leaves them thinking about their concern in a more positive light. Bottom line, you have little to lose by asking but it could make or break the hiring decision. Often you also get credit for being bold enough to ask.
One other technique for closing on a positive note is asking the interviewer what excites them about coming to work each morning. Again it is an opportunity to gain insight into the culture and the team you are considering. These candid insights will help you determine your fit in the organization.
After all the time and energy invested in an interview, be sure to end it on the most positive note possible to maximize your chances for success.