Leaders should know how to set goals. It does not matter if we talk about personal goals, or goals you will set for a team of people you will lead. Setting goals is simply important, and interviewers try to:
- Understand if you really care about the job offer. If you do care, you have likely already thought about things you’d like to achieve in your new job.
- Understand if your goals match their ideas of them. Your goals should correspond with the goals of their company. In an ideal case, you should speak about their goals (e.g. increasing profits, getting new customers, improving reputation, etc.), not about your personal goals (such as buying a Porsche, or getting recognition as a leader).
- See how far you look, and how big you dare to dream. Do you set goals for two, five, or for ten years? Are you brave enough when setting your goals, or do you prefer to stay close to the ground?
Leaders should have big goals, and know what they want to achieve in both short and long time horizon. What is more, speaking about long term goals you send a clear signal that you plan to stay with them for a long time.
Good answer differs for each job interview, as conditions are different in each company. However, let’s have a look at one sample answer, just for your inspiration.
I have made my research and thought about the position of your company. My first goal will be to make the processes more effective and ensure the quality control staff works well. I will work on the improvement of inter-departmental communication as well. Once everything is ready, my goal will be to increase our market share, and implement innovations, in order to become number one producer in the local market. I know it is possible, but it will take at least a few years to accomplish this goal. Your brand is underdeveloped and we need time to improve it.