By Cindy Cannon-
A long time ago, an interviewer asked me that question. All I could think of was, “I hope I am alive and doing well. How do I know where I am going to be?” But I realized I couldn’t give that answer.
“Where do you want to be in 5 years?” is a million dollar question. If you give the wrong answer, you will not get the job. So what is the right answer?
It is OK to turn the question right back at the interviewer. “I hope to be with your company 5 years from now. Where do YOU see me in 5 years?”
Your answer should also include a good word about yourself, for example: “I hope to be with your company 5 years from now. I am very flexible, and hope that you will give me increasing responsibilities. With my background, I know I can be an asset to your company. I am looking for a career, not a job, and I will do my best to contribute to the company’s goals.”
Did you notice I didn’t say I want to become a manager or a Vice President? I didn’t say I want to be in another position. That would have blown the interview. Perhaps the company doesn’t have that growth opportunity right now. If you say you want growth, they might say, “Oh, she won’t be happy because she wants growth and I can’t give that to her. What I can do is give her more responsibilities.” The interviewer might decide right there and then that you are out as far as getting a job with them. That is unfair, because you may have taken the position even if they didn’t have growth.
Remember to relate your skills to what the company is looking for. Always answer honestly and make sure your answers are very clear and concise.
Think before answering the question. Keep it positive. Relate your skill level with the level of skills that the company is looking for. The next time an interviewer asks you, “Where do you want to be in 5 years?” Hhold your head up high, smile and say, “I hope to be with your company.”
2010- Cindy Cannon – All rights reserved. ©
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