On most interviews you will be asked this question “What is your dream job?” This is equally true whether you are applying for an entry level job or a senior level job. Your answer can’t be something dreamy that has nothing to do with the current job you are applying for as this might make you sound like someone who is not happy to do the job. This means that you might not be able to give it your best effort. At the same time, your answer shouldn’t be that your dream job is exactly the current job you are applying for, no matter what it is. Because again this means that you are not ambitious enough and you will settle for the job without trying to do anything more or better.
So because we think that this question is very tricky, we have come up with 4 ways to answer this innocent looking question.
1. Be prepared
Instead of looking shocked by the question, you can always avoid the embarrassment by being prepared for this question and most of the other questions you are going to face during the interview. The truth is that interviewers usually have a predetermined set of questions and being aware of them ahead of time will save you a lot of confusion. Think about what your dream job actually is and don’t be shy to talk about it. Be specific as this will make you look determined. If you have a clear dream job don’t be scared to mention it to the interviewer and you can explain how you hope the job you are applying for will get you there one day.
2. Be specific in terms of where and when but not the job itself
Think about where and when you like to work. If you would like to pursue a job that involves a lot of interaction with people look owning a beach bar or a restaurant, then you explain that you enjoy working with clients and love to work with people and not behind a desk. If you would like to own your own firm one day, you can explain how you like working in a professional business environment and that is why you are applying for an accounting job. The thing is that you don’t have to come up with an exact title when you are talking about the dream job and the interviewer doesn’t expect you to mention one. Instead you can use this question as a chance to focus on your skills, on the things you can do and the things that you are good at instead of talking about a specific job title.
3. Link your answer to the company
There are two ways you could do that. You can either link your answer to the exact job you are applying for or you could link it to the company. Let’s say that your dream is own a B&B one day. You can say that you are applying for a job in the customer service department because you love interacting with people, or that you are pursuing a job in the sales sector because you take pride in providing your clients with what they need. You can also mention that your dream is to achieve financial stability and independence to be able to have your own B&B. This means that you will have to work at a successful firm that would provide you with the means to achieve this stability.
4. Have more than one answer depending on the interview
This question will probably come at the end of the interview and by that time you would be more able to decide on the atmosphere of the company and the nature of the person who is interviewing you. If the person seems relaxed and has a sense of humor, you can get as creative as you want. Feel free to talk about your dream job and link the skills involved in this job to the current one you are applying for and why your skills qualify you to excel at it. Avoid talking about this job as a step-stone that will take you somewhere else, because your employers wouldn’t like to hear that you are not committed and don’t intend to spend a lot of time with them. Instead talk about how this opportunity is a learning opportunity for you and that you are an investment and asset to the company rather than someone who wishes to exploit the company’s resources to reach a certain goal.
If however, you don’t feel that the atmosphere is relaxed enough, you can stick to something that is related to the job only more advanced and more successful. This will show your interviewer that you are an ambitious person who has got their future figured out.
However you choose to answer this question, you must remember that it is one among many and there is no right or wrong answer to this question. Only innovative ones which we recommend that you stick to.