1. Ask about the past. “What do you regard as major accomplishments?”
2. Ask about the present. “What is the biggest project on your plate today?” “What comes across your desk each day?” “Who is part of your team?”
3. Ask about the future. Delve into operational goals (new facilities to open, new products to introduce) and philosophical goals (important new directions).
That 1, 2, 3 approach nets you a great deal of information quickly and reinforces your profile as an organized thinker, a good listener and a fellow leader with a keen mind.