Interview Question: What will it take to Achieve Your Goals?
The Ideal Way to Answer the Interview Question-What will it take to Achieve Your Goals?
Arguably, goal setting is one of the most important aspects of life. Be it at home, school, or work, we are expected to set certain, specific, and realistic goals and how we intend to achieve them. Unfortunately, some individuals have restricted the process to listing goals alone; they fail to come up with an action plan and things to do to accomplish them. This has led to a drop in productivity and the overall growth of individuals, businesses, and organizations respectively. In the workplace, you are expected to make your goals align with that of the organization; also, your employer is interested in what you intend to do to achieve your goal.
The interviewer is tasked with the responsibility of finding the best candidate for the organization; the person is expected to tick all the boxes, and be able to answer behavioral and systematic questions. In addition, recruitment managers expect such candidates to be goal-oriented and success-driven. The person need to be strategic; he or she should always have the implementation of projects, policy, goals, or interventions at the back of their mind. This has led hiring managers to ask a series of questions related to the setting and attainment of goals. One of these questions is- what will it take to achieve your goals? This question is bound to come up whether you are interviewing for a managerial role or an entry-level position.
It is easy to fall victim to this question; a job seeker might mention hard work and commitment as answers to the question. Although hard work and commitment can make you achieve your goals, the interviewer is looking for a more professional and broad response. Moreover, hard work and commitment as answers to the question arguably sound vague. You are expected to take the hiring manager on a short journey when responding to the question.
Additionally, employers enjoy listening to stories and examples of your experiences and expertise. However, such examples must be presented with humility. The way and manner with which you respond are important; the interviewer is observing your attitude and overall personality. For instance, you shouldn’t tell the interviewer that you envisage and want to become the CEO of the organization, and you will be obedient, loyal, committed, and work hard to do so in 7 years. Thus, this article will focus on the ideal way to answer the interview question above.
Reasons why interviewers want to know what it will take to Achieve your Goals
The following are reasons why hiring managers pick up interest in knowing your plan of action to achieve your goals;
- Hiring managers want to recruit job applicants who are willing to stay with the company for the long run.
- The interviewer wants to see if you have a plan of action or not. Having a plan of action is paramount in the workplace and life in general.
- Also, the interviewer wants to compare your career goals and implementation plan to that of the organization; every company or business is looking for the right culture fit.
- Also, hiring managers want to know your ambition, level of preparation, and your ability to have a realistic action or implementation plan.
How to answer-What will it take to Achieve your Goals
Now, we’ve talked about having an implementation or action plan earlier. However, this is an interview question; therefore, it is not enough to have just an implementation plan. You should be able to have a particular way to revert to the question when responding. Hence, consider the following factors when preparing to answer the question;
Get clarity on your path and show self-awareness: Before you answer the question, you should have a clear idea of what your career goals are. This is vital because you can only take action to achieve a set goal, not the other way round. Therefore, recall specific milestones in your life and career and set your goals smartly. However, it is important to be realistic when setting these goals; you don’t want to project yourself as an unrealistic and overconfident candidate. Also, you should have any idea of how your personal goals can benefit the organization you are interviewing for. Candidates should focus on objectives that also help their employers such as training or certifications, and relate responses to the role they applied for.
Align your goals and implementation plan to the role you applied for: Interviewers are looking for synergy between your goals and that of the organization. Therefore, you should align both your goals and action plans for the attainment of the goals to that of the company. Recruitment managers are on the lookout for candidates whose action plans align with theirs. Hence, you should visit the company’s website and make sure that there is synergy between your action plan and that of your prospective employer.
Make sure you are a culture fit: The term “culture fit” often appears regularly when discussing how to answer interview questions. The reason is not farfetched; employers don’t want candidates that will take between 6 months to 1 year to fit in. In contrast, every organization wants that job applicant who will fit in immediately to its culture. Also, hiring managers want team players in their organization; thus, you should research the company well so that you know of the qualities the organization appreciates. Similarly, your response should be highlighted in such a way that depicts how well you fit the organization culturally and work.
Strike a balance between ambition and reality: The hardest part of answering this question is balancing your ambition with reality. Hiring managers need to know applicants can follow through on their plans. After all, they want workers that finish their projects. The best responses mix excitement and passion with thoroughness and practicality.
List specific steps: You should choose one or two goals and explain the actions needed to reach them. Getting detailed shows recruitment managers that you understand what it takes to achieve your vision and goals. Stress long-term commitment to the company as you complete these objectives to help hiring personnel see why you’re a good addition to their team.
Things to Avoid When Answering the Question
- Don’t focus on finances: Your response should not be centered on your salary or raises, bonuses, and commissions. Don’t make this a discussion about money. Instead, focus on your professional goals. Talking of salary is the biggest pet peeve while answering the question. When you give an impression that you are after the money, you will cast a negative light and lose your chance at landing the job.
- Don’t discuss goals that can’t be achieved at the company: Yes, you want to be specific, but stay away from goals that may not be achievable at the company. You wouldn’t for instance, want to layout your strategy for being promoted to a management level position while interviewing at a company that doesn’t have the role available.
- Do not be obsessed with job titles: It is often seen that career goals are marked by job titles. Although it might seem justified to you on a personal level, it is not wise to discuss job titles with your recruiter even before you have been offered a job.
- Do not be vague: Providing a vague answer can give the impression that you are not serious about your career. Instead, you should go ahead and name specific goals and share your plan. That’s the kind of long–term thinking that hiring managers want to hear. Vague answers may make it seem like you do not have long-term ambitions. Therefore, don’t make the interviewer have an opposite impression of who you truly are.
Sample Answer to the Question- What will it take to Achieve your Goals?
- There have been two things I have been fascinated about since childhood, History, and Journalism. I realized my passion to incorporate both whiles writing my thesis. I graduated with History as my major but it alone cannot help me succeed in the field or being recognized. Also, I intend to pick up online courses on digital marketing to help the organization make the best use of the digital space. The digital space is fast-evolving; leveraging it will help the organization make a better brand presence and get more return on investment.
- Starting this job as a retail assistant would be my first step towards a career in hospitality. I enjoy working with clients and I derive satisfaction from helping them find the right accommodation and lodge that makes them feel comfortable. However, my real passion is to have a hospitality agency of my own that links customers to premium lodges. I want to explore and live in that world. While working as a retail assistant, I plan to undergo vigorous inline training to obtain a certificate in hospitality in my spare time; this will take about six months. Afterward, I would love to work with clients to increase our sales and gain experience. My ultimate goal is to move into one of the organization’s hospitality agency roles.