“Help me out on how to answer the interview question; what are you looking for in a new position.”
Someone asked me the other day. As a previous HR manager for various SMBs, and having interviewed 100s of candidates, here’s what I have learned. Interviewers ask “what are you looking for in a new position” or other related ones such as “what are you looking for in a company” and “why are you looking for a new job” to understand;
- Your career goals and motivations and whether these will greatly impact the company’s vision.
- Whether you left your previous employer on good terms and why you left.
- Your projected work term. Long-term or short-term?
- Why this new job opportunity interests you.
- How much work and thought you’ve pulled together during your job search.
Now the big question is, how do you tailor all of these into one excellent, job-winning answer in a few minutes?
Well, that’s why you are here. Even if the question comes thus “what are the top three priorities that you are looking for in a new position”, the guide I am about to share here puts the right answer in your mouth.
So, here goes:
A Recruiter’s Guide & Bits Of Advice To Answering The Interview Question “What Are You Looking For In A New Position”
1.Take The Pain To Do A Diligent Research On The Company + Position
The first step is in understanding the vision and mission of the company. Today, almost all businesses and brands are online. By simply visiting their official website, you can find a page that clearly declares the company’s vision and goal. Other sources are magazines, newspapers, and blogs on which this company has been interviewed.
Also, read the job description again to uncover the candidate persona of who they are looking for. This is needed to define and picture yourself to fit into that frame without falsehood. By the way, see the complete guide to answering “why would you be a good fit for this position”. It’s likely the next question you would be asked after answering “what are you looking for in a new position”.
2.Start With What You’ve Got To Offer
Wait, isn’t this supposed to be about what the company has to offer you? Well, yes, but you need to hook them right from the start by letting them know what they stand to get from you first. Putting that in place makes them want to listen to you, it positions you right into the picture of the person they want to hire. Without directly mentioning that you are the perfect candidate, mention the skills you have that are relevant to the position as described in the job description. See the sample below.
Example: “I have always been a self-starter, lover of challenges, and a dynamic tech writer with good communication skills. I signed up for this job opportunity because it promises a lot of thrilling challenges, writing across diversified fields within the tech industry, and communicating with other departments every day. Likewise, working for a company that’s dedicated to replacing misinformation with information has always been a part of my dreams.”Also, see this post on how to ask if a job position is available.
3.Define Your Motivations
Having put out your offers, you need to assure them that you have enough motivation to deliver no matter the challenges. Of course, and to be candid, the paycheck is a common motivation and it’s okay to mention that as it says a lot about your transparency. However, never make it everything nor make it your first mention. Sit back, reflect on the things that motivate you to keep working, and how those motivations boost the company’s growth. Here’s an example;
Example: “As a tech content writer, one thing that motivates me is getting authorship credit for my works. For all writeups linking to my LinkedIn profile and my online bio, I endeavor to put more work and better professionalism into them in order to boost mine and the company’s reputation. My other motivations are a healthy work environment, career advancement, creating impact, learning something new while staying curious, having a sense of belonging to a devoted team, and making progress plus money.” Psst; here’s how to answer “how did you hear about this position”. You are likely to be asked that question after answering “what are you looking for in a new position”.
4.Declare Whether You’re In For A Short-Term Or Long-Term Work Relationship
You know, everyone wants to get the most of their investment. Even when your employer is hiring to fill a temporary position, it’s still important to declare how you intend to grow your career within that time span. So, go ahead, declare and explain the connection between your long-term career goal and this new position you’re gunning for. Here’s a sample; Example: “I am interested in a long-term position that allows for vast diversifications enough to develop the leadership skills needed to handle the content development business that I look forward to starting in the next 4-5years.”
5.Close With The Acknowledgement That This Particular Opportunity Has Everything You Are Looking For
The final seal to ace the interview question “what are you looking for in a new position”. This is where you finally explain that your goals and aspirations align with those of the company. Here, you can demonstrate your prior diligence in researching the company and your interest in their culture.
Example: “As one of the companies that I share common mission and outlook on digital consultation with, DigiSwingConcult has been on my radar for the past few years. I have been fortunate to see the company’s healthy work facility on the TV and also have some of your workers on my LinkedIn network. These workers share the same motivations with me and their description of the company’s culture meets my expectation.”
And that’s it. As a bonus, check this post to understand what a job offer letter is with examples.
Landing a dream job is not as easy as finding thousands of them listed every week on multiple job boards. If you’re able to make it to the interview stage, congratulations. Yet, you definitely need to put in all your best to answer all the questions in a way that presents you as the best candidate. Speaking of which, on this page, I have given you the complete guide to answering the interview question “what are you looking for in a new position” to win the job. All you have to do now is do your research as advised, craft your answer based on the blueprint I have given, and practice before the D-day.