Most candidates are thrown off guard by open-ended interview questions like “What are your long-term goals?” Interviewers pose this question to learn about your self-awareness and communication skills.
It’s great to have a long-term goal that you want to accomplish in the future. A candidate’s career must progress consistently. Long-term goals assist you in considering your education and moving forward with a specific career option. Long-term plans are at least several years away and are not something you can accomplish this week or even this year.
Why do interviewers ask, what are your long-term goals?
The interviewer is keen to learn more about your career goals and how this position fits into your overall plan. They are interested in your career objectives because they want to hire someone motivated, proactive, and likely to stay and work hard if hired.
You are much more likely to perform well if success in this role is significant to you as part of your long-term career strategy.
Many employers may be looking for a dedicated candidate to progressing within an organization and gaining valuable skills to become a future leader in their field. They might ask you this question to see if you’ll be able to work for the company for a long time. Understanding the roles, responsibilities, and skills you want to have in the next five to ten years can assist employers in determining your suitability for a position.
Employers can also evaluate a potential employee’s goal-setting abilities, such as their ability to identify achievable objectives, anticipate obstacles, and set smaller objects relevant to the overall goal, using this question. You can better demonstrate your qualifications by illustrating that you have long-term goals.
How do you answer the question “What are your long-term goals?”
In today’s competitive job market, interviewers are on the lookout for any red flags that can be used to justify not hiring someone. As a result, if you answer this question in a way that implies this isn’t the only job you’ve ever wanted, you may be unfairly eliminated from consideration.
An employer unsurprisingly prefers to recruit someone remarkably excited about the profession, someone who sees it as a great career move and will work harder to ensure it.
You may have already stated why you are interested in the position. They are, however, putting you to the test by asking, “Where are your long-term goals?”
If your 10-year goal is to become a content creator, they may find it difficult to believe that this position as a sales manager is your dream job.
Hiring managers, on the whole, dislike recruiting, hiring, and training new employees. It can be a challenging and time-consuming process. Your interviewer does not want to invest time and energy in someone who is already planning to leave for something better as soon as possible (whether that is a better-fitting job, graduate school, or starting your own business).
It’s a good idea to keep your options open to some extent. However, you are not required to mention this in your job interviews.
Never, ever lie during a job interview. That doesn’t mean you have to be completely honest about all of the paths you’re considering.
Your response should define your long-term goals, the steps you have already taken to achieve them, and the steps you intend to take. You will also need to explain how the position you are interviewing for will help you achieve those goals. Here are some steps to formulate an answer.
1. State your long-term professional goal.
The first step is to define your long-term goals clearly. The smart goals framework is the most efficient way to accomplish this. This strategy entails being specific with your goals, setting measurable milestones along the way to track your progress, and ensuring that your goals are both achievable and realistic. You can also use this method to ensure that your goals are relevant to your chosen profession.
2. Outline the steps you’ve already taken to get there.
You will need to describe what you have done to achieve your long-term goals up to that point to demonstrate that you are determined and realistic. Describe points on your resume that have assisted you in achieving your long-term objectives, such as your education or early role. This step boosts your credibility by demonstrating your dedication and determination in planning and selecting appropriate steps for your long-term goals.
3. Outline the steps you intend to take.
Following a thorough description of the previous steps you took to achieve your long-term objectives, you will need to outline your future strategy and how you intend to achieve your goals. Consider discussing your ideal next role or some of the career steps you intend to take shortly. This step provides context and demonstrates that you have a well-thought-out long-term plan that you are fully committed to following until you achieve your goal.
4. Explain how this position or company will assist you in achieving your long-term goal.
You can help the interviewer understand that the organization they represent provides the ideal platform for you to fulfil your objectives after describing your long-term ambitions and going over your past achievements and plans. Perhaps your next perfect role is the one you’re interviewing for, or it’s the next step after you’ve worked in this particular position. This step will demonstrate that your long-term progress will benefit the company as well as yourself.
Suggestions for discussing long-term goals in an interview
In addition to specific steps for crafting your answer, consider the following tips to help you optimize your answer and interviewing experience:
Demonstrate that your personality is compatible with the company’s culture. The desire to stay with a company for a long time is the first step, but the potential employer must see that you are competent for this position.
Your long-term career objectives should convey that you have the personality traits and work ethic suited for that organization, demonstrating that you are a long-term match. Pre-research the company to see what kind of personality they prefer in their employees and highlight how you fit that profile.
Be aspirational but realistic.
Ambition is one quality that a potential employer will look for in your response, but you should also demonstrate that you are level-headed and realistic. You can illustrate that you know what goals you can achieve in the short and long term to portray your ambitions as realistic and achievable.
Exhibit a strong interest in the job.
Potential employers are looking for employees who are motivated by both personal and professional goals. When discussing your long-term goals, make it clear to the potential employer that you want to develop and refine your skills within the organization. If you are selected, this tip will assist you in demonstrating your dedication.
Set realistic goals.
One of the primary goals of this question is for the employer to see your drive and determination to succeed. Making your goals seem realistic and attainable will increase your chances of landing the job. Your long-term objectives should demonstrate to the employer that you are a good fit for the company and its work ethics.
What not to say when asked, “What are your long-term goals?”
1. Avoid overthinking it:
Don’t overthink the question; instead, concentrate on one aspect at a time. Use your response to reassure the interviewer that you’re serious about this career.
2. Avoid being too specific:
It’s admirable that you have such lofty goals. These are worthy goals. However, if you are too specific, you run the risk of stating goals that are unrealistically achievable in the context of the job at hand. According to the interviewer, this means you aren’t a good fit.
3. Don’t be unconventional:
If you appear to have a million different ideas about what you want to do or have no clear plans about your future, you may come across as flaky. In reality, many qualified candidates are weighing their options or are still unsure. A job interview, on the other hand, is not a session with your career coach. You want to appear focused and have a plan (even if it isn’t the only plan you’re thinking about.)
4. Avoid raising red flags:
Many job hunters have long-term goals of returning to school or starting their own business. These are noble goals, but there’s no need to share them with your interviewer, particularly if you’re still weighing your options.
If you’ve already committed to full-time grad school or another path that will interfere with your ability to perform on the job, it’s only fair to be upfront about it.
Employers try to assess your potential and goal-setting abilities. It would be best first to create a long-term plan and then break it down into smaller milestones. Envision your strategies and be confident in portraying your long-term objectives. Be true to what you say and stay determined to achieve your goals; any employer will be impressed to have you on their team.
Sample Pdfs- Interview Questions & Answers
Practice answering typical questions with a friend or other “mock interviewer.” • Review frequently asked … What are your long term goals? o Don’t cite a specific …
You may take turns answering standard interview questions. … Keep your answers relevant – to the question and the job … What are your long term goals?
Be a good listener; be sure to answer the question that is posed to you. Don’t … Write out answers for the questions below. … What are your long term goals?