Provide an example of a goal that you successfully attained.

This question is something that an interviewer would ask in order to know how well you establish goals. Having the ability to set goals and achieve them is something that most companies would look for in a job applicant because this will say a lot about your performance as a potential employee, should you get hired. For you to provide an impressive answer to this question, it pays to read and follow the guidelines below.

What to Include in Your Answer

Although they may not say it outright, interviewers want to hear answers that define both your long-term and short-term goals. They want to know how you did it and what considerations you had to make to arrive at your decision. What this means is that they would want you to talk about what made you decide to set a particular goal and how you planned and organized in order to reach it.

Long-term goals are those goals that you want to achieve in the next 5 to 10 years, while short term goals are those that you want to achieve within a few weeks or a few months. The main focus in your answer should be the "how" because what the interviewer really wants to know is the things that you did to achieve your goals.

What Example to Choose

Because the question requires you to cite an example (which you should include, regardless of whether you were asked to or not), it is important that you choose the most appropriate example for the situation. In this case, you can use two examples; one for your long-term goal and another for your short-term goal.

Examples should center on your performance, or any work-related scenario because these things are most apt for a job interview. A good long-term goal example could be about aiming for a higher job position in your previous company, and for the short-term goal example, you can mention an experience that you had when working in a team or an individual project.

Did You Do It Right?

You want to make sure that you are able to drive home a point, because your answer would be useless if the interviewer did not understand the message you were trying to convey. In order to find out if you are doing it correctly, put yourself in the interviewer's shoes and ask,

  • "Would I be able to understand if I answered the question in a particular way?"
  • "Was I able to clearly explain how I achieved my goal?"
  • "Are my examples appropriate and sufficient to validate my main answer?"
  • "Are my explanations clear and easy to understand?"

These are check points that you need to go through one by one during your preparation stage so that you will be able to answer the question well during your interview.

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