I thought about how I have historically shot down questions that interviewers ask me. Their questions often mean nothing. Out of empathy, I just wondered what I would ask if I was on the other side of the table. First, let me share a few bullshit questions often asked:
1. How did you hear about the position?
Does it really matter? Does it really make any difference at all?
2. What are your strengths and weaknesses?
I think of the bigger philosophical issue here-- the nature of the noun the pronoun your is referring to.
The reason everyday people struggle with this question is that they have not compartmentalized their predicates (potential attributions). In retrospection, they can see inconsistencies in their past. They had interests they do not have anymore. They seem to like things they never liked before. Those who make a strong claim to strengths and weaknesses, which are not related to the body, such as the ability to lift a certain amount of weight, are either lying or have a very constant sense of themselves. They must have inflexible egos.
Unfortunately, the former is a liar or just a job seeker who has over-prepared himself. The latter is a slave to his own self, his own ego, for he has contained himself in it and wants to continue being contained in order to be consistent. This is a case of self-imposed slavery.
Second, what should you ask?
Ask things you would wonder about a relative, a date, or a new friend! When you meet a cousin for the first time, do you ask his strengths and weaknesses? When you go on your first date with someone, do you ask how he first heard about you? When you make a friend, do you ask you should friend him?
Here are some real questions that you can ask if you actually care about the candidate:
What do you enjoy doing?
What kind of books you read, movies you watch, and places you visit?
What do you think you want in life?
What kinds of jobs you have previously had? What caused you to leave?
Do you think people should get a second chance?
Do you enjoy assuming risks or staying conservative with risks?
Most of these questions are very answerable and tell a lot about an individual. Depending on the individual and what they say, more real questions can be framed, ones that honestly need answers. Depending on the nature of the job, the questions can become specific.