This is a repost of the article of the same name on www.expatwoman.com
If you’re on the job hunt, keep in mind that there are some questions that you can choose not to answer.
Whether you’re dealing with a recruiter or the company’s HR, you can sometimes be blindsided by questions you might not be so comfortable answering. There are instances when it’s okay to say so or answer diplomatically instead. Remember to never show that you’re agitated or answer in a rude manner.
If you choose to answer these questions, they can have a negative effect on the outcome of the interview or offer. Here are popular ones to watch out for…
1. Previous salary
This question is one of the most asked ones. It’s meant to help them decide between giving you the salary your skills are valued at or to simply give you a slightly higher salary than what you’re making.
This can be detrimental if you had originally accepted a lower pay to simply secure a job until you found something more suitable. It can also mean missing out on a much higher salary.
As a way to avoid answering, you can simply state that you have a non-disclosure agreement with your employer about your salary information. Then, you can just offer to tell them about your expected salary.
2. Plans to be pregnant
Aside from being something that is hard to plan, it is an extremely personal question. Depending on the contract, every woman will get some maternity benefits. Your answer to this question might determine whether you get hired or not.
So regardless of your plans, simply let them know that you don’t have any specifics to offer, but that any future plans won’t affect your work.
3. Childcare arrangements
No prospective employer needs to know this information, unless it’s going to actually affect your work. You can just reply by saying that your child is taken care of and you don’t foresee your work or daily routine affected.
4. Social media accounts
While most recruiters will try to do online checks, you should never voluntarily give your personal social media details and you’re definitely not obliged to. There are many things that can be used to judge you and affect the outcome. Just explain that you’d prefer to keep them private.
What you do socially is of no concern to your employer, unless it would somehow affect your job. Being enthusiastic about saying yes or going as far as explaining that you do so often can cost you the job. The best thing is to say that your social life has never affected your work.