During each interview, the hiring managers do not just assess your professional skills; they need further insights into your career goals, too. Why is that?
If your goals are not aligned with the company’s direction, they would assume you are not the best fit for the role or are unlikely to stay with the company for long. Hence, when asked to describe what you are looking for in your next job, you should consider what to say carefully.
The answer, of course, must be honest, but it also needs to be tactfully worded and does not hurt your chances of getting hired. Let me help you with some of my sample answers to this common interview question.
In this article:
How to Answer What Are You Looking For In Your Next Role
1. Research Is The Key
Before the interview, you should do some research to understand the company’s mission and core values, which often serve as their overall guiding principles. Then, align your goals with these values to demonstrate you share the same ethos with the company.
- Do not forget to investigate the company’s culture and employee testimonials, which reveal the company’s day-to-day dynamic. You can leverage these insights to express your compatibility with the workplace atmosphere.
- If possible, research the company’s current position in the market. Some job seekers go as far as learning about the company’s market share and competitors! That way, you can easily give a great explanation as to why you want to be part of the company’s success.
2. Show Enthusiasm
Genuine excitement about future opportunities with the company can set you apart from other much less enthusiastic candidates!
- To respond to this common question, use positive, energetic language in your responses. Do not just say you “want to”; let’s opt for “excited,” “thrilled,” or “eager” to convey a stronger sense of enthusiasm.
- Pay attention to your tone of voice. Speak with a confident, upbeat tone, and remember to vary your pitch to avoid sounding monotone. Such a lively and engaged voice can definitely convey your enthusiasm more effectively!
- As always, a genuine smile can instantly reflect your positivity. Other non-verbal cues are just as powerful: maintain good posture, make eye contact, and use appropriate gestures to express your excitement. Avoid crossing your arms since most people consider it a closed-off attitude.
3. Mention Learning Opportunities
Regardless of position and industry, employers always appreciate candidates who are eager to improve their skills and stay relevant in their field.
- Share positive experiences from past learning opportunities and how they contributed to your professional growth. For instance, you can briefly discuss how you took the initiative to gain and use a particular skill for your performance in previous roles.
- Mention specific skills or certifications you are eager to acquire, then align those learning goals with the job requirement. As a result, the interviewer can see that your desire for growth is directly related to the job position and will benefit the company.
What Is Most Important To You In Your Next Position? 11 Example Interview Answers
1. Professional Growth Opportunities
“I am truly thrilled by the chance to expand my skill set beyond the job description, such as through cross-functional projects or advanced training programs.
That’s why I’m currently seeking a position that both acknowledges the importance of continuous learning and actively promotes it. It would be even better if there is a clear career path for the role.”
2. Challenging Projects
“I am seeking a role that offers a dynamic, stimulating team environment where I can contribute my expertise to tackle challenging projects.
For me, pushing my boundaries for creative solutions is one of the best ways to promote personal and professional growth. It also encourages a positive, innovative workplace culture, which perfectly resonates with my career aspirations.”
3. Inclusive Work Culture
“I am looking for a workplace that values differences and makes every member feel empowered and supported.
I strongly believe diverse perspectives lead to richer ideas and much more effective problem-solving. As a member of such an inclusive team, I am confident I will be able to thrive both personally and professionally, performing at my best to contribute to the organization’s collective success.”
4. Clear Company Goals and Expectations
“I believe I should have a straightforward, transparent understanding of what is expected of me.
Knowing what needs to be accomplished allows me and my team to be more focused and avoid unnecessary confusion along the way. It also gives me a strong basis for performance measurement, as I can easily assess my progress toward the stated objectives and identify specific areas for improvement.”
5. Leadership Opportunities
“I would eagerly accept a role that offers ample leadership opportunities, allowing me to improve my critical skills in strategic thinking, decision-making, communication, and so much more. I’m fully aware there might be a lot of challenges to overcome, but personally, I find them both motivating and rewarding.”
6. Flexible Work Arrangements
“Flexible work arrangements are currently one of my priorities; my performances tend to peak when I am able to align them with my most productive hours. Furthermore, from what I researched, workplaces with highly flexible schedules are also likely to promote diversity among the team, which is another important aspect I am looking forward to.”
7. Workplace Stability
“While I truly appreciate new challenges, I also value stability in the workplace; in my opinion, it forms the bedrock for overall job satisfaction. The sense of security, marked by consistent leadership and a clear organizational vision, allows me to invest more in my role and positively impact the company’s success in the long run.”
8. Workplace Wellness Programs
“For me, a workplace that invests in wellness does not just attract top talent; it also retains and motivates its existing workforce. Furthermore, these programs indicate a forward-thinking company, which is exactly what I am looking for!
Fitness classes, health screenings, and stress management resources are some of the excellent wellness support I can think of. And from what I researched, your company is one of the best places for these, which partly motivated me to apply for the role.”
9. Networking Opportunities
“Having the chance to connect with professionals from diverse backgrounds in my previous roles, I understand more than anyone the benefits of a strong network!
Hence, being part of a company culture that actively promotes relationship-building is very important to me. Furthermore, given our ever-changing society, success would be impossible if we failed to stay connected with the best practices and industry trends.”
10. International Opportunities
“Even in my previous roles, I have always sought global exposure to broaden my horizons.
Working across borders requires problem-solving skills and adaptability, both of which I am excited to improve. It also opens the door for collaborations and partnerships that transcend geographical boundaries, giving me more opportunities to grow professionally.”
11. Environmental Sustainability Practices
“Throughout my career, I have developed a strong commitment to contributing positively to our planet. I have also witnessed the actual positive impact that companies can bring about when they prioritize sustainability. That’s why I’m excited to work in an environment where eco-friendly initiatives take center stage.”
4 Bad Answer Examples To Avoid For This Job Interview Question
- Avoid giving generic or overly broad responses to this tricky question. Those vague answers may make you seem disinterested or, worse, unprepared! Be as specific as possible about your preferences and how they are a perfect match for the company’s culture.
- While competitive benefits (e.g., salary) are valid concerns, do not make them your sole argument! Of course, you can bring it up but remember to emphasize other aspects like growth opportunities, company culture, etc., to show the interviewer a well-rounded perspective.
- Never express extreme dissatisfaction with your current or previous jobs. Instead, keep your response positive and forward-looking, and focus on what you are seeking rather than what you are trying to escape.
- Obviously, off-track answers that fail to tie your goals to the company’s will send you home immediately. Do not rant about your desire for “flexible working hours” when the company already states its strict 9-to-5 schedule on its official website!
See more interview tips:
- How To Write A Follow-Up Email After Interview
- 3 Examples For Thank-You Email After Interview
- 8 Examples of Challenges You Have Overcome At Work
- 6 sample answers of accomplishments at work
- 5 Examples of Problem-Solving in The Workplace
- How To Ask for Feedback After Job Rejection
- How to Explain The Reason for Leaving a Job on Applications
For Interview Question:
At first glance, the interviewer seems to express concern about your preferences. The truth? They want to evaluate how your personal goals benefit their business at the end of the day! Choose your words wisely to show them that hiring you for the role will be a win-win situation for everyone involved.