Interviewers use a variety of interview questions. To ask you about your goals, or intentions, belongs to popular questions in an interview.
But do you have any idea why do employers ask you this question, so you can construct the right answer to it? Let’s have a look at it and at some samples of a very good answer.
- They try to estimate the level of your loyalty for an employer.
- They try to find out if they can count on you in a long run.
- They want to figure out if you are a responsible person and know what you want to achieve in life. Every responsible person has at least some goals..
As you can probably figure out by yourself at this point, you should always answer this question with the help of your goals. But the question is: What goals should you mention, and what goals should you avoid?
The answer is not so easy and depends strongly on the position you are applying for, on the possibilities of career growth and other things in the company. Let’s have a look at some specific tips, when it comes to answering this question. After the tips, we will have a look at the sample answers.
How to answer this question in the interview?
Companies do not like to hire someone for a less than few years
If you are not applying for an interim position, companies will always have long term plans with you (or other candidate they choose for the job). Recruitment is an expensive process and they simply do not want to repeat the whole procedure again, just because you leave for better offer, after being with them for one year.
That is the reason why your goals should always correlate with this. Because of that, the following goals are definitely NOT the best answers to use:
I want to start my own business soon.
I plan to go abroad after some time.
I want to work for XY company, but it is not possible right now.
HR workers or interviewers do not want to hear this. If you plan to start your own business or to go abroad, they can hardly count on you in a long run… So they will not choose you. Oppositely, your answer should indicate the desire to work for a company for a long time and make a good career. A good answer can be:
I would like to have a good career in an international company (like yours one) and simply be beneficial for my employer. I am looking to stay and grow.
I am motivated by my achievements. I really want to do my job well and help the company to prosper in a long run. This is my biggest goal, to be a part of a successful company and to play a role on this success.
Similarly to the why should we hire you question, you should answer the question about your goals in the way that the employer understands, that you want to stay in the company for a long time.
Personal goals are not always bad in the interview
Some people believe that it is a big mistake to mention personal goals in the interview. However, this is not true. Sometimes, especially if it goes about jobs without career growth possibilities, personal goals are better than the professional goals. Just think about it. If you apply for a job of a receptionist (just an example), there are hardly any possibilities for career growth.
That’s why mentioning your personal goals, such as:
To become a better person
To improve my language skills
is not a bad idea at all. Especially, if it is positive for the employer, like in this case. To improve language skills is definitely a good goal for receptionist and it is also positive for the employer. You should keep this principle in mind anytime when talking about your goals in an interview.
Some sort of personal goals is especially good to mention. The goals that are associated with abilities such as responsibility, endurance, and the like, can create a very positive picture of you in the eyes of the employer.
Small goals are sometimes better than the big one
Your aims do not have to be big. It should simply correspond with your decision to apply for the job. But they can be pretty small. For example, the following goal is very good for administrative positions, customer services, and similar.
I just want to have a good job, a job I like, where I can do my best and be happy in my daily life. I believe that this job can help me to achieve my goal.
To conclude it, you should not think about it too much. Simply try to remember the principles we outlined, be honest and always try to say something positive from the point of view of an employer.
Not easy, right? If you would like to see brilliant answers to dozens tough interview questions, I recommend this eBook from Bob. Alternatively you can spend more time on our website. Thank you!