Where do you see yourself in 5 years?
It is a very common question in job interviews, and a difficult question to answer. Who can predict the future? What do you want me to say?
Many applicants think that “I see myself in this job” or “I want to move to management” are good answers because they show that you are ambitious and want to grow and advance. However, this is not always the best way.
If you’re interviewing at a large corporation, the answer in Where do you see yourself in 5 years? above may be fine, because (depending on your job level), there is likely room to move up, both for you and your potential boss.
However, if you are interviewing in a small company, your boss may not have room to move up, so ‘I want to move up’ can be a threat to his job. The particular situation of the company must always be taken into account.
WHAT IS THE BEST WAY TO ANSWER THE “Where do you see yourself in 5 years?” QUESTION?
Remember that they understand that you can’t really predict what will happen 5 years from now. But they want to know how this position fits your long-term goals:
Are you interested in this job / industry in the long term? Or is it that you plan to be in a completely different place 5 years from now?
Once they make an investment in you (in terms of onboarding and training), are you going to stay long enough for them to recoup their investment?
Are you interested in growing in another type of role or expanding your skills? Or is this job exactly what you want to do in the immediate future?
Your answer will depend in part on your career you are in, and there are “traps” to be aware of. If you are over 50, do not tell them about your retirement plans. Nobody wants to hire someone who constantly looks at the clock until it’s time to go. Tell them how much you are willing to contribute and even develop new skills.
In general, a good answer for Where do you see yourself in 5 years?sounds like this: “I want to grow and develop my skills and contribute to the success of the company.” You can even talk about how much you look forward to a higher level of responsibility as you learn more about the company, or are hopeful that you can do even more.
If you want to move up, you can say, “If I’m being considered for a potential management position in 5 years, I would be interested, but that’s not really my first goal. My biggest goal is to learn, grow and contribute significantly to our success ”.
That is a strategic and diplomatic response that will impress your interviewer. For more important questions in Job Interview check this article!