Many job applicants prepare themselves to answer questions regarding their past, but a lot of hiring managers also want to know what you have planned for the future, which is why you might be asked, “What do you ultimately want to become”
There are certain things interviewers are trying to learn when asking this question. First, they are trying to see if you do, in fact, have a goal for the future. Secondly, they want to see if your ultimate goal is in line with the field in which you are applying. And lastly, they want to see if you are taking steps to achieve this goal or if it is ultimately just a pipedream.
Points to Emphasize
When discussing your future to a prospective employer, it is important to keep the following points in mind.
- Discuss a goal that is relevant to the position you are applying for
- Focus on how you plan to achieve that goal
- Talk about a goal that is realistic
- Make it clear that getting this position will help you with your dream
If you are applying to be an insurance salesman, it would not be wise to talk about how your dream is to be a world-famous musician. Even if this job is not what you ultimately want to do, convince the hiring manager that this is just one step in achieving your dreams.
Mistakes You Should Avoid
A bad response could jeopardize your chances of getting the job, so look out for these common traps.
- Don’t gloss over your accomplishments or plans for achieving this goal
- Avoid saying that you don’t really have a plan
- Don’t talk about a goal that is irrelevant to the position
- Avoid talking about extravagant, far-reaching goals
Everyone should have something they are striving for. This position may not be what you ultimately want in life, but it should be a stepping-stone to you achieving your dream career.
A good answer to a question about your long-term goals should be along the lines of:
Ultimately, I am looking to expand my knowledge of the industry and advance through the ranks in order to gain a more senior-level position. My education in film production has assisted me greatly, and last summer I worked as an intern at a production company, giving me hands-on experience and vital skills.
Your answer should be personalized to reflect the field in which you want to advance or your background. Employers want employees who have ambitions because it means they are going to go above and beyond in order to achieve their goals, so feel free to talk about what you really want.