Discussion 35: Can You Ask Me That?

Job Club, Job Club Heart of Texas | 32 comments

Campusjobxpress.com was experiencing a system malfunction this morning. We apologize for the delay of this week’s discussion. Enjoy!

 

We all know how important an interview is when seeking a job. This is our key to employment, our time to shine. An interview is our moment to answer all the questions appropriately, whether or not the question is, in fact, appropriate. It is important to know what questions are appropriate and inappropriate for an interviewer to ask you, but it is more important to answer these questions without offending the employer. The following are several questions under different topics.

Which questions do you feel are appropriate or inappropriate? How would you respond to an inappropriate question?

The correct answers will be posted in the magazine article: “Can You Ask Me That?”

Age:

1. Are you over the minimum age for the hours or working conditions?

2. What year were you born?

3. When did you graduate from high school?

Citizenship:

1. Are you a citizen of the US?

2. If you are not a US citizen, do you have the legal right to remain permanently in the US?

3. Are you, your parents or your spouse naturalized or native-born US citizens?

Criminal Record:

1. Have you ever been arrested?

2. Have you ever been convicted of a crime?

3. Have you ever spent a night in jail?

Disability:

1. Do you have any disabilities?

2. Can you perform the specific duties of the job?

3. How does your condition affect your abilities?

Family:

1. What kind of childcare arrangements have you made?

2. Is there any reason you can’t start at 7:30AM?

3. How will your spouse feel about the amount of time you will be traveling if you get this job?

Marital Status:

1. Are you married, divorced, separated, etc?

2. Is this your maiden name or married name?

Military:

1. Describe the relevant work experience that you acquired from a US armed forces as it relates to this position.

2. What is your experience in other than US armed forces?

National Origin:

1. Where were you born?

2. What languages do you speak, read or write fluently?

Parental Status:

1. How many kids do you have?

2. Are you pregnant?

3. Do you plan to have any children?

Race or Skin Color:

1. What race are you?

2. Are you a member of a minority group?

Residence:

1. Will you be able to start work at 8:00AM?

2. Do you live in town?

Sex:

1. Do you wish to be addressed as Mr., Mrs., Miss, or Ms.?

2. What are your plans to have children in the future?

 

– – ATTENTION – –

 HIRING EVENTS LISTED BELOW:

March 19, 2013

Local Employer Hiring Event Waco WFC:

RM 141 9:00am-2:00pm

Job Posting: Bus Driver #4912260, Diesel Mechanic #3144802, Maintenance Shop Supervisor #2683650

 

March 20, 2013

Local Employer Hiring Event Waco WFC:

RM 141 9:00am-2:00pm

Job Posting: Bus Driver #4912260, Diesel Mechanic #3144802, Maintenance Shop Supervisor #2683650

 

March 20, 2013

Local Employer Hiring Event Waco WFC:

RM 130/119 9:00am-12:00pm

Job Posting: Telephone Verification Operator # 6882274

 

March 20, 2013

Local Staffing Company Hiring Event Waco WFC:

RM 129 1:00PM-4:00PM

Job Posting: Warehouse Associate/Forklift Operator #6235082, Warehouse S&R Associate # 3168835
March 21, 2013

Local Staffing Company Hiring Event Waco WFC:

RM 130 1:00PM-4:00PM

Job Posting: Warehouse Associate/Forklift Operator #6235082, Warehouse S&R Associate # 3168835

 

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32 Comments

  1. Charles Becker

    Hello Job Club Members, this is Chuck Becker. These questions are good to consider, whether they can ask or not, the key would be remain calm. Being open with the employer, and being able to interview well, may be more important. As we can see, there are many ways to ask a question. Employers will probably find out, even more today with the social websites like Facebook, Twitter, Linkedin about you personally. Plus alot run a back ground check, which probably also displays alot.(maybe). USA TODAY, even had a article about som employers requesting a credit file report.. It will be interesting what they can ask. Alot of applications now ask ethnic, and race questions for Govt. surveys.(?)… Will watch for the answers.

    Reply
  2. sherriemorgan

    I’m not really sure which questions are not allowed but if I’m hired they would find out anyway. Be best to answer all asked honestly.
    Thanks,
    Sherrie Morgan-Cole
    (My computer crashed last week. While I was posting, so I’m not sure my comment made it thru.)

    Reply
  3. sharringt0n

    It is best to answer all questions honestly as stated above.

    Only in one interview was I ever asked a question that right away I felt was inappropriate. I was asked, “if my child were sick one day, and I knew I had a deadline that day, how would I handle it?” I talked about my sick care backup plans and got the job. BUT… in hindsight? I should have taken that question as a big red flag that this particular boss was not family-friendly. She was inflexible about scheduling even when Saturday and Sunday and evening makeup hours had been worked in advance of the doctor’s appointment (or whatever).

    So now, if a question is asked that throws up a flag for me, I just answer honestly. In hindsight I wish I had answered, “in reality, my child will always come first.” Because that is more the truth.

    It will be interesting to me to see which of these questions are not allowed.

    Reply
  4. dorothy conroy

    I would like to read the article, some of these
    questions are quite personal.

    tks Dorothy Conroy

    Reply
  5. ioniajones

    Ionia Jones here. I am curious about what questions won’t pass the “smell test”. I’ve seen questions similiar to some of those above on job applications. They were just worded differently. A good interviewer will find a way to get some of those personal questions answered. It is important to be as honest as possible, but if you don’t feel like questions are appropriate, then that’s company might not be a good fit for you. Well, I’m going to check out that article! Have a great rest of the week!

    Reply
  6. ljwp

    Yes, some of those questions are rather invasive.

    Linda Parten

    Reply
  7. carolynwalter

    Carolyn Walter here. There are questions under each category that an employer is not allowed to ask. But some of those not allowed are required on applications in order to get an interview. If I were asked a question I thought was invasive, I would smile, tell them although they may feel the answer is relevant, I on the other hand don’t. No employer needs to know your personal life before hiring you. If hired, then it’s your choice to talk to coworkers about your personal life. No employer should be discrimatory in their questions and should not display negativety when applicant is reluctant to answer. I, too am interested in reading the article.
    Home Depot is advertising for help wanted.
    Also, found a new site online that was pretty interesting and had several listings in the Waco area that I haven’t seen before. It’s job-hunt.org. Also Craigslist had a couple, just wish I qualified. Hope this helps someone.

    Reply
  8. tommyharper

    It is obvious that each of these headings contain less than proper questions. However I have nothing to hide and I would answer relevant questions honestly.

    God Bless
    Tommy Harper

    Reply
  9. Susan Wade

    Good morning, Susan Wade here. Sorry I didn’t make it back on-line yesterday afternoon. I had an appointment. The questions are interesting. Obviously some of the questions such as age, national origin and race are not allowed as they can be discriminitory. In each category, some of the questions are allowed and some are not. If I felt a question should not be asked, I would try to tactfully determine the relevance to the position I am seeking. Prospective employers know better than anyone the questions they cannot ask, but some might push the limits.

    Reply
  10. Susan Wade

    Susan Wade here again. Sorry, but I wanted to mention the area under job club on the home page was blank this morning. In order to find the new topic, I had to look under Archives for March 2013.

    Reply
  11. Charles Waddle

    Inappropriate questions should be looked at very suspiciously. Most employers are well aware of what they can and can not ask. If I were asked questions that are obviously inappropriate I would probably look elsewhere for a job.

    Reply
  12. markbeadle

    That very interesting. Most employers know what they
    can or cannot ask. If a questions is asked that I feel is
    inappropriate then, I’ll simply say no comment.

    Reply
  13. Eugene Wlodarek

    As others have stated, most interviewers know what they can and cannot ask. But if asked, I would try to reply honestly.

    Reply
  14. zonagreen

    I think some off the questions are inappropriate and could be asked differently. It’s best to be honest.

    Reply
  15. alanmccoy

    Hello Everybody

    Some of these interview questions can make you pretty uncomfortable. What i have tried to do is prepare in advance an honest reply that summarizes my perspective. That is about all one can do.

    Reply
  16. angeladevinney

    I think I would find a way to answer each question honestly. I have never served in the military, do not have children, could find a way to get to work at whatever time they needed me to be there, have no problems disclosing my ethnicity or other questions on here although many are inappropriate. Here is how I broke down inappropriate from appropriate questions. I await hearing which was which.

    Appropriate:
    Are you over the minimum age for the hours or working conditions?
    Are you a citizen of the US?
    Are you, your parents or your spouse naturalized or native-born US citizens?
    Have you ever been convicted of a crime?
    Can you perform the specific duties of the job (generally it is worded essential functions)?
    Is there any reason you can’t start at 7:30am?
    Are you married, divorced, separated, etc?
    Describe the relevant work experience that you acquired from a US armed forces as it relates to this position.
    What languages do you speak, read or write fluently?
    Will you be able to start work at 8:00AM?
    Do you wish to be addressed as Mr., Mrs., Miss, or Ms.?

    Inappropriate:
    What year were you born?
    When did you graduate from high school?
    If you are not a US citizen, do you have the right to remain legally in the US?
    Have you ever been arrested?
    Have you ever spent a night in jail?
    Do you have any disabilities?
    How does your condition affect your abilities?
    What kind of childcare arrangements have you made?
    How does your spouse feel about the amount of time you will be traveling if you get this job?
    Is this your maiden name or married name?
    What is your experience in other than US armed forces?
    Where were you born?
    How many kids do you have?
    Are you pregnant?
    Do you plan to have any children?
    What race are you (should be phrased if even asked, describe your cultural heritage or ethnic background)?
    Are you a member of a minority group?
    Do you live in town?
    What are your plans to have children in the future?

    I am still waiting to hear the results of my background check on that job. By the way, Bates Nissan in Killeen is hiring.

    Angela

    Reply
  17. Diana Marquez

    I think some of these questions could be addressed in a differently way…but everyones questions are different …

    Reply
  18. Ron Stratton

    I feel like the questions about age would be deemed as inappropriate. But, on the other hand, if I were the employer, I would be thinking about how much service the individual would be able to provide. The employer has a right to protect the interest of his/her business.

    Reply
  19. Jeffrey Gregoire

    Some of these questions are relevant on an application, some of course are not & could be considered discriminatory. A skilled interviewer can get people to revail alot about themselves without having to ask inappropriate questions. Interesting to think about. Thanks for the information. Jeffrey Gregoire

    Reply
  20. Michael Dutton

    Most companies know the law regarding appropriate questions. If asked any of the inappropriate questions a good response might be to ask in a nice way how this questions helps determine my qualification for the position. You can also file a complaint with the EEOC. Their web site gives examples of inappropriate topics.

    Reply
  21. Victoria

    It’s always best to know what is appropriate to ask and what would be inappropriate to ask. Questions about age and religion, for example, are not appropriate. Best wishes!–V. Nimmo

    Reply
  22. brandyrodriguez

    It’s all great to know which questions are inappropriate and all- but the real questions is how do you respond when asked a question that is inappropriate and still want to get the job?? I mean I don’t think that you want to say “no comment” and think that they will not think poorly of you.

    Thanks
    Brandy Rodriguez

    Reply
  23. ChaiHo

    In my opinion, some of these questions cab be inappropriate to ask, but I will answer honestly even I don’t like it.

    Reply
  24. jbrig

    If I remember Correctly any questions in regards to Ethnic origin, Sexual orientation, Family and marital status are completely off the table for employers. If asked you do have the right to refuse to answer as how it does not have anything to do with the position you applied for. But then again I’ve been wrong before and will have to admit that it has never cost me a job before not answering questions along those lines.

    Reply
  25. Christine Sawyer

    Hello all…I’ve learned that when asked a question like that, give a vague answer in return or carefully redirect onto another subject (i.e. “that reminds me…..”) has worked best for me. That way you don’t leave a “gotcha” feeling behind when you complete your interview.

    Reply
  26. hcharwell

    not all personality ,are the same you will get all different answers

    Reply
  27. kn1964

    I read an article about most Job Seekers have no idea what an Illegal Interview question sounds like. Here is a list of questions that a job interviewer should not be asking you.
    1. Age
    Inappropriate:
    How old are you?What year were you born?When did you graduate from high school?
    Appropriate:
    Before hiring, asking if you are over the minimum age for the hours or working conditions.After hiring, verifying same with a birth certificate or other ID, and asking age on insurance forms.

    2.Citizenship
    Inappropriate:
    Are you a citizen of the US?Are your parents or spouse citizens of the US?On what dates did you , your parents or your spouse acquire US Citizenship?Are you, your parents or your spouse naturalized or native-born US citizens?

    Appropriate:
    If you are not a US citizen, do you have the legal right to remain permanently in the US?What is your visa status (if no to the previous question).Are you able to provide proof of employment eligibility upon hire?

    3.Criminal Record
    Inappropriate:
    Have you ever been arrested?Have you ever spent a night in jail?
    Appropriate:
    Have you ever been convicted of a crime?

    4.Disability
    Inappropriate:
    Do you have any disabilities?What’s your medical history?How does your condition affect your abilities?
    Appropriate:
    Can you perform the specific duties of the job. After hiring, ask about medical history on insurance forms.

    5.Family
    Inappropriate:
    Questions concerning spouse, or spouse’s employment, salary, arrangements, or dependents.What kind of child care arrangements have you made?How will your spouse feel about the amount of time you will be traveling if you get this job?
    Appropriate:
    Can you work overtime?Is there any reason you can’t start at 7:30am?Whether an applicant can meet specified work schedules or has activities or commitments that may prevent him or her from meeting attendance requirements.

    6.Military
    Inappropriate:
    What type or condition is your military discharge?Can you supply your discharge papers?What is your experience in other than US armed forces?

    Appropriate:
    Describe the relevant work experience as it relates to this position that you acquired from a US armed forces.

    7.National Origin
    Inappropriate:
    What is your nationality?Where were you born?Where are your parents from?What’s your heritage? What is your mother tongue?How did you acquire the ability to speak, read or write a foreign language?How did you acquire familiarity with a foreign country?What language is spoken in your home?
    Appropriate:
    Verifying legal U.S. residence or work visa status.What languages do you speak, read or write fluently?

    8.Race
    Inappropriate:
    What race are you?Are you a member of a minority group?
    Appropriate:
    None

    9.Residence
    Inappropriate:
    Do you own or rent your home?Do you live in town?With whom do you live?
    Appropriate:
    Inquiries about the address to facilitate contact with the applicant.Will you be able to start work at 8:00am?

    10.Sex
    Inappropriate:
    Do you wish to be addressed as Mr., Mrs., Miss, or Ms.?What are your plans to have children in the future?Appropriate:
    None

    Reply
  28. Joyce Blanchard

    I believe most employers know what questions they are able to ask. I would answer truthfully. If it was a question not relating to the interview, I would not answer it.

    Reply
  29. J C Riggs

    Good information.

    Reply
  30. zshade37

    Sorry, this entry is late, but had some technical difficuties last week. In reference to last weeks discussion, those questions whether they can be asked or not is really irrelevent; the real question is how you react to those questions. An interviewer may be just testing you, to see a reaction. Whether or not he or she can get a rise out of you.

    Reply
  31. stantongreer

    If I believe I am in business for myself no matter what role I may be performing, my ‘company’ always reserves the right to refuse service. I view job interviews as the employer trying out for me just as much as I am for them. If they ask inappropriate questions in a fairly low trust situation then they’re probably not a good fit.

    Reply
  32. carolsmith1960

    I think it would be….. Have you ever been convicted of a crime?

    Reply

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