Three Great Questions To Ask When Looking For Your Next IT Manager Job

To get the job, you need to know what questions to ask
To get the job, you need to know what questions to ask
Image Credit: Alan Cleaver

As IT managers we often find ourselves in demand by other companies. If we decide to test the waters and go out on a job interview, we’d like to have the company that we’re talking with make us an offer. In order to cause that to happen, we need to do a good job during our IT manager job interview. On top of all of the IT manager training and IT manager skills that we’ll need to communicate during the interview, we’re also going to have to make sure that we ask the right questions. Three questions will be the most important.


When you are interviewing with a company they have a need to have the position that you are interviewing for filled and filled fast. When they are talking with you are they are internally asking themselves “…if we hired this person, how quickly could they start to help us out?” During the interview you need to provide them with the answer to this question.

One way to go about communicating that you are ready to go to the people that you are talking with is to ask them what they would like you to accomplish in the first 60 to 90 days. This simple statement clearly shows that you want to hit the ground running. It is not your intention to first get to know everyone and then get to work. Instead, you want to start to produce results as quickly as possible.

Who’s The Best?

Yes, one reason that you are interviewing with a company is to find out if they would like to hire you. However, the other side of this coin is for you to find out if you would like to work for this company. In order determine this you are going to want to find out what the people who work for the company do right now. Specifically, you want to find out what the best people at the firm do.

You can accomplish this by asking the people who you are talking with what the common attributes of their top performers are. Their response will contain a great deal of information for you. If they don’t know, then that means that they don’t know who their stars are. If they can quickly provide an answer, then clearly they are all in daily contact with their best people.

It’s All About Results

If a company is going to be willing to employ you, it’s because they believe that you’ll be able to make them more successful. What this is going to mean for you during an interview is that you are going to have to ask some penetrating questions in order to determine just exactly how you could contribute to the company’s success.

A great way to do this is to ask what are a few of the things that drive results for the company. What you need to be looking for are things that you’ll be able to help the company accomplish if they were to hire you. The more things that you’ll be able to influence in the position that you are interviewing for then the better your chance of being a benefit for the company is.

What All Of This Means For You

As IT managers we are the ones who are in charge of our own careers. What this means is that when we decide that it’s time to move on, we need to go out take a break from our IT team building and do some interviewing. Yes, what we’ve been able to accomplish in our current position will be important, but so too will be the questions that we ask during the interview. There are three questions that are the most important…
During the interview we need to be sure to ask what would be expected of us during the first 60 to 90 days? This will help us to understand if they truly know what they are looking for. Next, we need to ask what the company’s current top performers look like. Are there any common characteristics and do you have those characteristics? Finally, you’ll want to find out what drives results for the company. What’s it going to make this company a success?
How you come across in a job interview is a critical factor in determining if you are going to get the job. Keep these three questions in mind and make sure that you ask them during your next IT manager job interview. You’ll be seen as the type of worker that they want to hire!

– Dr. Jim Anderson
Blue Elephant Consulting –
Your Source For Real World IT Management Skills™

Question For You: Do you think that you should ask questions at the start of your job interview or at the end?

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What We’ll Be Talking About Next Time

I wish that I could tell you that there will be no things that happen in your IT manager career that will surprise you. However, both you and I know that that simply is not true. Instead, there is probably going to be a lot of uncertainty. What this means for you as an IT manager is that you are going to have to use your IT manager skills and IT manager training to show your team how best to deal with this uncertainty.