A thorough, detailed self-assessment allows you to gain a clear understanding of your own skills, experience, talents, abilities, strengths, weaknesses, interests, work values and achievements.
In the first of this series, posted under the title English Job Interview: Fail to prepare, prepare to fail, I detailed the best way to compile your soft and hard skills in the context of an interview. Today, we will examine questions related to your future.
Self-Assessment 2 - The Future
Almost all interviews will contain at least one question regarding your future goals. It can be a tricky question because quite often, we have no idea where we want to be in ten years, and in any case, plans change. While it is not necessary to show that you have a clearly structured path laid out in front of you for the next twenty years, you need to show the interviewer that you have at least got a vision of where your career is going. It is essential that your career goals are compatible with what the company requires from new recruits.
To prepare for this part of the interview, sit down and take twenty minutes to really think about what you want from the job you are interviewing for. How do you show the interviewer that you are a worthwhile investment?
Brainstorm some ideas under the following headings:
List your long-term career goals.
Where do you want to be in 5 years?
Where do you want to be in 10 years?
How are you going to achieve your career goals?
What rewards do you expect to gain from your business career?
Now that you have thought about your future, it is time to start constructing some answers in English that demonstrate your suitability for the job.
1. Do your research and understand the company and its goals for the future. You need to show that your plans are compatible with the company’s long-term goals.
2. Demonstrate to the interviewer that you are excited about this job opportunity. Show your enthusiasm to work for the company long-term. No company wants to invest time and money in an employee who will leave in a few months.
3. Show the interviewer that you are ambitious and have a work ethic to match your ambition. However, be realistic. Make sure to find out what promotion opportunities exist for the position you are applying for.
4. In your answer, it is wise to focus on the present (what you can bring to the company immediately) and then the future (what you will bring to the company over time)
Sample Question and Answer
Where do you see yourself in 5 years’ time?
Part 1 Present: Well, in the short term, I’m really excited about the prospect of getting back in the classroom again after a break of 2 years. My time working online has allowed me the time to develop a lot of new ideas and teaching materials and I am looking forward to using these with my new students. I’m looking forward to building an excellent relationship with my students and the other staff at the university.
Part 2 Future: Once I am settled in, I would be very interested in writing some articles for publication and taking on some other roles within the department if they became available. At my last university I ran the internship program in my department, and I would love to become involved in something like this again going forward.
Part 1 Present: Well let me start by saying that my number one goal is to hit the ground running and to do the very best that I can for the company and to excel in my department. I really relate to the company’s vision and looking forward, I would relish the opportunity to be part of this company’s long-term future.
Part 2: If there were promotion opportunities down the line then of course I would be interested. Over time, I am confident that I would be capable of taking on more responsibility within my department and the company as a whole.
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