Nowadays LinkedIn feeds are filled with many professionals complaining about traditional interview questions. They express their anger by stating that these kind of questions are not relevant and interviewers should stop asking them.
What they don’t understand is there is a specific reason behind every question. And that is why interviewers keep asking them. And as a candidate, if you are able to understand that, then answering these question will become very easy for you.
One such question is “Where do you see yourself in 5 years”
Sounds simple yet so difficult to answer, mostly because it doesn’t tell the candidate what exactly interviewer wants to know and what is the purpose of this question.
And that’s what we will discuss here, how to answer “Where do you see yourself in 5 years” perfectly –
Understand Interviewer’s Objective :
With this answer they want to know :
Are you a person worth investing in:
With your plans, they want to understand if your goals are in alignment with the company goals. Or the kind of opportunity you will be seeking in your future, whether the company will be able to provide you that or not. As that will further determine your stability in the company.
So basically from your answer interviewer seek assurance about your long-term association with the company.
Are you a person who is self-aware and understand the market :
With your answer, they will evaluate how aware you are of your skills and expertise and how are you planning to enhance them. How much you understand the market and opportunities available there. How coherent your thoughts and how realistic your planning is.
So now when you know what interviewers expect from you from this answer: let’s frame a good answer to “Where do you see yourself in 5 years”
First, keep the answer generic, you need not share every single detail of your future plans, just a basic outline or framework. Too many details will give rise to more follow-up questions, so it is safe to keep it generic.
As you know the interviewer expectations, frame the answer in two parts – where the first part indicates your inclination towards current role and fitment with the company and its culture and second part talks about your future plans.
This answer is a great way to show how much research you have done about the company and how well this role and company fits into your future plans.
How To Prepare :
If you are someone who has already done a career planning (Read here about career planning), then you just have to modify your answer to meet the interviewer expectations.
And if you are someone who has not given any thought about it then you have to do some research about the role, company, industry etc. Visiting other professionals profile and understanding the growth path of their career will help you in keeping your answer more realistic.
The great thing about this question is, if you prepare its answer well in advance, then it will not only save you in an interview but also give you clarity about your future goals.
Sample Answers of “Where do you see yourself in 5 years”
These answers are basic frameworks, you can add and mention your technologies, skills, industry, job role etc. here and there and modify it.
“Well, in next 5 years I want to build deep expertise in my current working area (You can mention your field name or job role here ). And for that I find this job apt for me, as I feel that this is the company where I can grow and learn variety of things. And then with that expertise, I want to build my managerial and leadership capabilities to advance in my career.”
“See in initial years, I have gotten the experience of working in a company, which was very conventional in terms of work approach. I definitely have learned a lot there. Now my next career plan is to move in a company where open-work culture is appreciated and your company fits in that. With the amalgamation of these two working experiences, I wish to move further into a more strategic role, where along with the fulfillment of business needs, I will get to manage people also.”
“I have started my career with the executive role. Now with this job I will get a chance to work as a manager. So my next step or plan will be to mover further and handle roles where along with demonstration of managerial capabilities, I can also contribute in the strategic vision of the company. So hierarchy wise I plan to move up in senior leadership roles. And I am certain that next years in this company will lay down the foundation of it.”