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Don’t think about yourself during an interview

At some point during every interview, the interviewer asks, “So why do you want to join us?” or words to that effect.

At some point during every interview, the interviewer asks, “So why do you want to join us?” or words to that effect. If your response as a candidate is, “Because I think my chances of rising are best at your company,” that is certainly a testament to your ambition, but it’s not a very good answer. After all, a future employer doesn’t necessarily want to hire the most ambitious employee or the one with the biggest ego. They want the one who brings the greatest benefit to the company.

Viewed from this perspective, candidates should be authentic and put their ego aside to express an interest in their possible future employer. Setting aside narrow self-interest to put the company’s goals front and center is a much more sympathetic approach than acting self-centered. Your standing improves when you can produce detailed knowledge showing that you have done your homework about your future employer. Your future boss or manager can see your motivation and ability to prepare from these signs.

A good answer when asked why you want to join a particular company might be: “Your company is a recognized market leader. It has an excellent reputation. I’d like to be part of a company like that.” Or you might say, “I think your company could benefit from my skills.”

An interview often closes with the interviewer asking whether the candidate has any questions. Never say no. Ask about sales targets, change management, production cycles. Ask whatever you want! Just be sure to take this opportunity to show your interest.