500 Questions: Your Career Goals, Part Two

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What motivated you to change careers at this time?

Answer this question as honestly as you can, while maintaining a positive and amiable manner. Explain your reasons for leaving your employment in such a way that the interviewer is aware that you seek personal growth and development.

Would you ever consider starting your own company?

This is a personal choice that only you can make. The interviewer wants to gain insight into your ambition, motivation, and long-term goals and how well you will ultimately fit in with the company. Describe the natural next step in your professional development based on what you’ve learned and enjoyed in your last job. What do you feel ready to tackle next?

What prompted you to choose your current career?

This is your chance to sell your aptitudes that fit the job description. They are looking for what value you can bring. Tie in your answer to the industry, company goals and your own personal objectives.

Describe your ideal job.

Ideally, your perfect job will be the one you are currently interviewing for. Make sure your answer closely matches the position for which you are applying. Describe the activities, environment or type of colleagues that would make your work most enjoyable. Keep your answer general and avoid specifics.

What career goals do you bring to your work?

This question will be asked if it is apparent that your career goals might benefit your work. In this case, you could show that you have solid, logical reasons for choosing your field and that it is compatible with your new career choice.

If you could start your career again from the beginning, what would you change?

The interviewer is trying to determine how satisfied you are with your current position, field and career choice. Discuss the lessons and personal development that you continually gain. Don’t emphasize changes or dissatisfaction with previous choices.

Have you progressed in your career as you expected?

Review the positive learning experiences from your past jobs and the next steps you are ready to take as a result. Be realistic in admitting the areas where you need more experience. Honesty is important here, without demonstrating either pessimism or unrealistic expectations.

What are your work-related goals for the next few years?

Employers would like to know if your goals fit opportunities available in their organization. If your goals fit their needs, then you’re more likely to be offered a position within the company.

Where do you see yourself in five years? In ten years?

The interviewer is seeking your level of ambition. Focus on the types of experiences you hope to gain over time, as well as the experience that the job you are applying will bring.