Is it OK to ask at a job interview whether I'm suitable for this position?
December 17, 2012 9:36 AM Subscribe
I have a job interview for an academic position. In the interview, is it OK to ask them what they think they are looking for? Details inside.
I've been shortlisted and am being preliminarily interviewed for an academic position which is pretty clearly not quite in my direct field, and I know the search committee thinks so. I don't plan to try to convince them that I'm something I'm not. The job description is fairly flexible, though. In the part of the interview where they ask me if I have any questions, can I ask them a question like "What exactly are you looking for in this position?" to try to elicit a more concrete statement from them about whether I would really count as a candidate, and to try to see whether there are dissenting opinions among them about what they're looking for? Or would that annoy them coming from someone who is clearly one of the marginal job fits? I would basically be trying to ask them why they shortlisted me when I'm such a weird fit to the job description. Suggestions on, er, better and more elegant ways to ask this would be welcome. Also, any ideas for other questions for interviewers would be great. Thanks in advance.