It seems like every interview you go to, you usually get asked the same questions.
What are your strengths?
What are you weaknesses?
Why do you want to work here?
One time I was interviewing at McAlister’s Deli and was asked that last one. I answered, “I love sandwiches.”
I didn’t get hired.
The other question that I seem to always hear is, “Where do you want to be in five years?” This is when you’re supposed to explain your well-thought-out plan for your life and career.
Honestly, I think this is kind of a pointless question. I get it that they want to know if you’re driven, but it’s just kind of crazy to try and map out that much of your future, and expect it to actually all go accordingly. At least in my life it is.
I had a five-year plan when I was graduating high school. I was going to graduate college at 22 and get married at 23. I was even going to have kids when I was 26. All of those went bye-bye starting with me not graduating college at 22. I’m still not married yet and I’m 28. But hey, I had a plan.
I think it’s good to have goals and ambitions, but to say, “This is how I want my life to go,” pretty much sets you up for disappointment or frustration when it doesn’t go that way.
So I’ve given up on having a five-year plan. I have dreams and aspirations, but I don’t have it all mapped out. I’m taking it on one day at a time, and my method is not even by choice. It’s how I have to do it. Usually when I find myself upset and frustrated, I realize it’s because my plans have failed. That’s when I’m reminded that you really can’t plan too much in life. Thus, I am forced to take it one day at a time.
In my most recent interview, I was asked where I wanted to be in five years. I said that I liked the type of work I was interviewing for and could see myself continuing in this path, but honestly, five years from now I just want my wife to know that I love her. And if I have kids, I want them to know that their dad loves them and is involved in their lives. I want to have purpose beyond 9-to-5. I want to have my integrity intact. That’s the only plan I have for the next five years.
By the way, after that interview, I was hired.