We have all been in this position, you’re at a job interview and the interviewer asks “Why do you want to work here?”. Of course your first impulse is to say that you want to make money, need a job, or have rent to pay. That’s obviously not what your interviewer wants to hear, in this quick guide, we will go over how to answer this question and impress the interviewer at the same time. The thing about this question is that by asking it they are asking two questions, ‘why do you want this company?’ and, ‘why do you want this position?’.
You always need to prepare your answer to this question, because the chances are high that the hiring manager will ask it, so, how do you prepare? Think about it, do some research, why do you actually want to work there, what makes you want this certain company over another. Is it the opportunities you will get working there, or is it the people you will get to meet, it is important to know the true reason that you want to work there. If you are not genuinely interested in the job and can’t think of any reason apart from that it pays well, you might want to consider looking at different opportunities that better interest and motivate you, because there is nothing worse than waking up every day, dreading going to work.
In order to convey why you want to work at this company, your answer needs to be specific, make a remark that applies to the specific company, and not a general statement that could be said about any other company you could apply to, this shows you are dedicated to this specific company, which is what the hiring manager wants to see, and not taking a stab in the dark, taking whatever you can get. Do your research and be informed, show your knowledge of the company and industry at hand, impress the interviewer. Talk about the company’s success, reputation, or even their philosophy. Another thing is that in order to be successful, align what you say with the mindset of the company, the better you get along with the company’s ideals and values, the more likely you will be selected for the job. Yet another major factor that will affect your success in answering this question is to be enthusiastic, you want this job, so show this to the interviewer through the enthusiasm in your speech, this tells them you actually want this job, and will be committed to your work. You want to show that you will commit the foreseeable future to the company, and won’t leave within the next few months or years.
In order to answer why you want the specific position at the company, refer to past experiences, such as if you think it is the next natural stepping stone in your career. Also address what you can do for the company in the position you applied for, and potentially what you could do for the company in the future, because after all, the interviewer doesn’t care what you get out of the job, but how the company profits from you doing your job well. It is important to convey that you are the right person job, and that have unique qualities above the requirements of the job that could potentially profit the company. Know the department you are going to be working at inside-out, what do they do, how many employees are there, what is expected from you, etcetera. This is sometimes not possible, as companies do not always share intimate details of their work force or operations, so if you can’t find anything, add something personal, a personal reason you admire the company and would enjoy working there, such as the fact that you have seen it grow from a small business into a major market player, or even an experience you, a friend or family member had with the company, it could be anything, as long as it does not portray the company you are applying to in a bad light, that is an instant red flag for hiring managers, they want employees who love the company and will spend most of their foreseeable future working for the profit of the company, they want loyalty and dedication.
Keep your answer short, just like every other question you will be asked, they are not looking for an extremely long-winded and boring answer, but a concise, enthusiastic and clear response that directly answers the question without any fuss or unnecessary details that might be wasting the interviewer’s valuable time, this will also give off the professional attitude of getting things done well and quickly that the hiring manager is looking for in potential employees. Make sure that you answer the question in a genuine manner, and not as if you are reciting what you practiced, that shows the interviewer you are nervous and might easily crack in difficult situations, answer the question naturally and move on to the next question.
Most importantly, like every other interview question, don’t try to be funny, it is an absolute death sentence to your consideration for the job, trying to crack a cheesy joke, like “Cause I’m totally broke”, is not funny, even though it might be your first impulse and you think it’s funny, or you think that the interviewer would be amused , they won’t, they hear jokes all day from nervous interviewees that got scrapped off of the list.
To sum up, in order to answer this question successfully, you need to research the company; find a genuine reason you want to work at the company; find out what you can offer for the company and most important of all, stay calm, answer the question and move on, the question is meant to challenge your quick thinking and ability to deal with unfamiliar situations quickly and effectively. Be creative, interviewers are looking for something different and want you to impress them, but most important of all, be genuine and be yourself.