Interviewing

55 "Get to Know You" Questions for the Workplace

July 30, 2020

Getting to know the people in your workplace can have benefits for you and your coworkers. While getting personal in the workplace can sometimes be challenging, with the right attitude and some proven get-to-know-you questions you can get the process moving in the right direction. In this article, we will discuss the importance of questions to get to know people in the workplace as well as examples of specific questions you can use for a better connection with coworkers.

What are get-to-know-you questions?

Get-to-know-you questions are questions that help you better understand, relate to and know the people you work with. These questions can range from casual to in-depth depending on your goal with the person you are speaking to. Incorporating these kinds of questions into your workplace can act as an icebreaker for new employees, a way to bond with current employees and help boost overall job productivity among your team.

Related: Communication Skills: Definitions and Examples

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Why are getting-to-know-you questions important?

Asking questions shows people that you are interested and would like to know more about them. Such an exchange can further your working relationship among both coworkers and individuals you manage. The more interest you show in others, the more they will respect and like you.

Additionally, if you are a manager, getting to know your team members can help build trust and promote open communication between you and those you manage. While it may seem simple, showing your team members you are interested in them can have many benefits for your team’s overall production and job satisfaction. 

Additional benefits of get-to-know-you questions in the workplace include:

  • Learning why someone is in the work position they are in
  • Discovering your team’s weaknesses and strengths
  • Increasing your employees’ overall happiness at work
  • Helping new employees feel more comfortable and part of the team
  • Building positive relationships with your coworkers or employees
  • Allowing your staff to get to know you better
  • Acting as an icebreaker for employees and managers

Related: Building Rapport: Tips and Examples

How to ask get-to-know-you questions

There are several different ways and circumstances in which you can appropriately ask getting-to-know-you questions. For example, you could stop by a coworker’s cubicle and start a conversation based on the photos they have on display. Have they traveled a lot? Do they have pictures of their heroes or favorite sports teams pinned on the walls? This is a great way to start a conversation because it flows naturally from elements that your coworker has already introduced.

Additionally, if you are a manager, you could incorporate icebreaker questions into your weekly or monthly team meetings. Go around the room and have each person answer one get-to-know-you question they pull from a hat. Doing this can help warm everyone up to each other and set the tone for a more communicative and creative meeting.

The key to asking questions to get to know someone within the workplace is to keep the questions respectful and appropriate. For example, asking about previous work history or what they love about their job is a great example of an appropriate get-to-know-you question. However, asking your coworker what the cause of their recent divorce was is probably not a great question to ask, especially if you don’t know them that well.

The more thoughtful, positive and respectful you keep your questions to get to know people at work, the better the conversation will go. If you’re unsure whether a question is proper for the workplace, consider how you would feel if someone asked you the same question. If it’s a question that would make you uncomfortable, it’s probably best to avoid asking it at work.

Related: How to Introduce Yourself to New Coworkers

55 great questions to get to know people at work

Whether you are holding a team meeting or casually chatting at a coworker’s cubicle, there are countless questions you can ask to get to know someone. Get started with these 55 questions:

  1. What’s your job title?
  2. What sort of duties do you have at work?
  3. Do you have any mentors in your professional life?
  4. What was your first paying job?
  5. Who inspires you?
  6. What kind of music do you like?
  7. What’s the best concert you’ve been to?
  8. Do you like traveling?
  9. What’s the best place you’ve traveled to?
  10. Do you like reading? If so, what genre of books do you like?
  11. What’s the best book you’ve read recently?
  12. What’s the most exciting part of your job?
  13. Where did you work before this position?
  14. What’s your most-used productivity hack?
  15. What animal would you consider your spirit animal?
  16. Do you have any vacations planned?
  17. What’s something you’re proud of?
  18. What’s your favorite food?
  19. What’s your favorite movie?
  20. Do you have any hidden talents or hobbies? 
  21. Do you have any pets?
  22. Are you a sports fan? Who are your favorite teams?
  23. Are you a morning person or a night owl?
  24. Are you a coffee or tea person?
  25. What’s something you find challenging about your work?
  26. Who do you look up to within the company?
  27. If you could change one thing about your life, what would it be?
  28. What’s your biggest fear?
  29. What motivates you at work?
  30. What’s one thing you’re really bad at?
  31. What’s one thing you’re really good at?
  32. What show are you currently binge-watching?
  33. Have you ever met anyone famous?
  34. What’s a skill you’d like to improve on?
  35. If you could have a career in anything, what would it be?
  36. What’s your favorite memory?
  37. What’s the best compliment you’ve ever received?
  38. When you were a kid, what did you want to be when you grew up?
  39. What’s your least favorite chore around the house?
  40. What’s your favorite thing to do on the weekends?
  41. What’s your favorite holiday?
  42. Can you speak more than one language?
  43. Where do you see yourself in 10 years?
  44. What was your favorite subject in school?
  45. How would your friends describe you?
  46. Do you play any sports?
  47. Are you able to keep a secret?
  48. Are you an introvert or an extrovert?
  49. Do you like roller coasters?
  50. Do you have any phobias?
  51. If you could play an instrument, what would it be?
  52. Which historical figure would you most like to meet?
  53. What’s your favorite season?
  54. What three items would you take with you to a deserted island?
  55. What’s your idea of a perfect day?