A Hiring Manager is likely to ask you a variety of questions regarding your work experience and skills. You will probably be asked a number of questions regarding the open position and how you fit into the role. A job seeker also needs to be prepared to be asked why they would want to work for the company they are interviewing for.
Hiring Managers hear all the time that a candidate is evaluating them and the company during the interview process. It would seem, then to make perfect sense to ask why someone would be interested in the organization. The good news for job seekers is that this is a question where your preparation can easily place you in a position to nail this one.
Your answer to this question can take you in a few different directions. The easiest path that a person is most likely to go down, is to start talking about the position and the duties of the job itself. This, however, does not really answer the question being presented by the Hiring Manager, who is asking about the company. In this instance, the question specifically focuses on the company as a whole.
Instead, your focus should be on what you have learned about the organization and how it aligns with your beliefs, values, and style. If you have gathered intelligence about the company from those internal to the company, then be sure to note this fact. Not only will it reinforce what you are saying about the company, but Hiring Managers love to hear that current employees are speaking highly of them. Let’s take a look at the specific areas that you can note when answering this question.
- Company’s External Social Responsibility – This is an area that barely registered twenty years ago and is now a central aspect of the evaluation process. You may pick up a note or two during the interview about a company’s activities in this area. It would be a valuable observation, if the Hiring Manager felt the topic was important enough to mention during the interview. This is especially the case if some examples are presented for you of charitable work or social change that is important to the organization. If the company’s social focus is aligned with something that you do in your own personal life, then this should be noted to the interviewer. Your pre-interview research is critical in this area and information should be pretty readily available on the company’s website or by doing a search engine exercise.
- Diversity Internal Advocates – If you are someone in the noted demographic categories, then an organization that advocates for their internal advancement would be very appealing. There is nothing wrong with stating to the Hiring Manager that, as someone who is “x”, you look for an organization that will be welcoming and not offer career barriers. You can reference that this company has a tremendous reputation for being open to individuals such as yourself.
- A Growing Organization – An open position does not automatically translate to an organization that is growing. In fact, most positions are open due to the departure of the person who previously was working in the role. A company, however, that is creating positions is also creating opportunities for people to move up in the organization in a much faster pace than waiting for someone to leave. A related offshoot to this growth is often a commitment to skill and knowledge development that will improve you professionally. Specific to your role, you can ask the Recruiter when contacted why the position is currently open, which may clue you in on their growth. You can also do your research on the company and see if there are news articles regarding hiring or new clients being added.
- The Overall Company Culture – Most companies of any size, where the work culture is important to them, are very public in this area. So, an employee focused culture will be visible on social media posts and their company website. Management style is also important and if you have developed a positive sense of the company’s philosophy then this also could be noted. This is an area that when observed, you should reinforce how you will add to this culture with your positive mindset.
If, for some reason, you have not developed a refined and specific answer to this question, then be honest with the interviewer. Communicate to the person that you believe you are a perfect fit for the position and that you will be very productive quickly in the role, however, you would like more information about the organization. This will especially work if the company is more private and less active on social media.
The question of why you would want to work for a company is an important inquiry that should be an easy one for you to do well on. A key is for you to genuinely be able to express your passion and interest in the areas that you have decided to focus on. What you want to accomplish is for the Hiring Manager to feel that this is more than a transitional job for you and that you have an advanced level of engagement and commitment to the organization. The employer’s hope is that this will translate in not only increased production and teamwork out of you, but also improve their ability to retain your employment.
As always, the best of luck in your job search.
The following has been prepared for the general information of WNYJobs readers. It is not meant to provide advice with respect to any specific legal or policy matter and should not be acted upon without verification by the reader.
Joe Stein WNY Human Resources Professional
Feel free to contact Joe Stein regarding questions or comments at: Joe Stein