When you step into a room for a professional interview, you should be prepared to receive a wide variety of questions. As you try to formulate responses in advance, it is helpful to first understand what the interviewer is really asking. For instance, you might be asked, “What was your title when you first started here” If a hiring manager asks you this, he or she is trying to gauge your dedication to professional advancement. Most careers have an average trajectory, where individuals are expected to advance after a certain number of years in lower-level positions. With this question, the interviewer wants to understand both your experience and drive to succeed.
Points to Emphasize
The fact that the interviewer wants to know about your original position within the company implies that he or she wants to know what brought you to the business and why you stayed.
- Emphasize how you achieved your professional advancement.
- Focus on any obstacles you’ve overcome to get to your current position.
- Showcase your developed skills and abilities.
- Highlight how you are prepared to advance to the next level.
Give a positive response. If you can, talk about the good of the company and why you are choosing to advance within it instead of moving on to a different enterprise.
Mistakes You Should Avoid
Perhaps you haven’t advanced as quickly as others due to extenuating circumstances. If this is true, try to focus on the more positive aspects of your career. Keep these tips in mind to help your interview stay on track.
- Do not blame any stagnation on coworkers or supervisors.
- Avoid drawing attention to any times you failed to advance in the normal amount of time.
- Do not fail to emphasize your knowledge of the company and its inner workings.
- Do not assume the interviewer already knows the answer to the question.
Even though you might have worked with the company for a while, you might not know your interviewer. Explain your position but keep your response clear and succinct.
Here is an example of a good response to the question regarding your first company title:
I began here as a cashier, so I originally stocked shelves, helped customers and operated the register. After a year and a half, I was promoted to shift leader and was in charge of unloading and checking in inventory as well as overseeing my coworkers. Now, I’m ready to continue my career with the company.
Remember to answer the question directly but also show your company loyalty and dedication to career advancement.