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Mistakes to Avoid When Answering “What Are Your Career Goals.”

We briefly touched on this above when we told you that “total world domination” probably wasn’t a career goal you wanted to share with a hiring manager, but there are several other pitfalls you will want to avoid as well including:

1. Relaying goals that have nothing to do with the job you’re applying to:

This one falls under the ‘no duh,’ category of dumb interview answers. The last thing you want to do is tell a hiring manager in an interview for that your goal is to do something totally unrelated to the job you’re applying for right now. Remember, hiring managers would much rather bring someone on board they feel will have a future with the company, not someone who views the position as a temporary landing spot on their journey in life.

2. Relaying goals that aren’t professional:

Remember to always keep your answers on topic and while it’s tempting to throw personal goals into your answer, you need to make sure you stay focused on the ultimate immediate goal which is to get the job you’re interviewing for. Remember, while the interview is about you, it’s also ultimately about the company and finding the right employee to fill the spot. Make sure your answer focuses on your professional goals.

3. Relaying goals that aren’t realistic:

Again, world domination isn’t an acceptable answer. Neither is becoming the CEO or insisting that you’ll be running the show in five years. While we’re not saying these things can’t happen, try to maintain a level of realism when doing your interview. Confidence in an applicant is a good thing. Overconfidence can make you come off as arrogant and cocky, two personality traits that are more likely to get you shown the door than the corner office.