when an interviewer asks what your dream job is

A reader writes:

It’s been over two years since I graduated from college with an Interior Design degree. Despite my best efforts, I still haven’t been able to find a full-time job. I’m sure there a million possibilities as to why, but at this point I am tired of trying to figure it out. So I have basically given up on my interior designer dream. Right now, I am temping at an energy company while I am still looking for a full-time job. But my job search has changed recently a bit; instead of looking for a design/creative  job in my major, I have been applying for full-time administrative/ entry level positions instead.

A few weeks ago, I had interviewed for an assistant marketing position at a clothing showroom. I am assuming I didn’t get the job, because they never responded to my follow-up email or ever contacted me again. But one part of the interview stuck with me, and I am wondering if maybe I went overboard talking. The interview was with the VP of Marketing, who I would have been assisting, and his daughter (she doesn’t work there but it’s a family business). The ambiance was very casual (though I was dressed very professionally), and they seemed very friendly. All in all, the interview felt more like a conversation than a grilling interrogation. But at one point during our conversation, the daughter asked what would be my dream job. So I very frankly said: “I would love to be a project manager for an interior design firm that specializes in hospitality design.” They seemed surprised and interested in my reply and asked me more questions.

Was I too honest ? Should I have said something that could relate more to the company I was interviewing for? I was talking about my dream job, I figured it’s one thing I didn’t need to think very hard about. And how do I convey to potential employers that even though my dream is not here with them, I would still work hard and value the experience I would get working with them if I was hired ?

It’s impossible to say if that answer rubbed them the wrong way or not, but in general, citing a dream job that has nothing to do with the field you’re applying for can be a bad idea. In a lot of cases, it makes employers think you’re not going to be satisfied with the job they’re hiring for, and/or wonder if you’ve even thought through your interest in their job, and/or think that you’ll leave as soon as a path to your dream job comes along.

This might seem silly, because of course plenty of people have dream jobs that they don’t intend to pursue, but the fact remains that by answering the question with an unrelated dream job, you raise questions in (some) interviewers’ minds that they’d rather not have. It probably helps to understand that when an interviewer asks this question, they’re trying to get a better sense of what your career goals are and how this job might fit in. If your answer makes it clear that this job doesn’t fit in at all, then they’ve got concerns.

None of this means that you should lie, but it does mean that you want to give an answer that accounts for the fact that you’re applying for this particular job. In your case, it sounds like you mentioned a very specific unrelated job in an unrelated field and didn’t connect it to the job you were applying for with them, which could throw an interviewer off.

All that said, it’s entirely possible that your answer had nothing to do with why you didn’t get the job.

And I cannot end this answer without noting that the fact that your interviewer had his daughter participate in the interview when she doesn’t work there is weird, family business or not. So these might not have been particularly stellar interviewers to begin with.

{ 65 comments… read them below }

  1. Kimberlee, Esq.*

    This is something I’ve been wondering about more and more recently, on the hiring side. I like to ask this question, not only for the reasons Alison cites above, but because it can very well affect the candidate’s trajectory through the company. If I know what you’re truly interested in doing, I can better imagine the organization’s theoretical future with you, and where you might end up.

    But I do also worry that this is throwing candidates… I want an honest answer, and I won’t toss your application when it’s clear that this job is just what you want to do until something better comes along (after all, if I’m hiring for a position that really *doesn’t* have a lot of upward mobility, I’d rather hire someone who will be ready to move on in a couple years), but I understand that just asking this question is inviting apprehension and dodgy answers.

    1. Anlyn*

      I’m not a hiring manager, so I could be wrong, but I think instead of asking “what’s your dream job”, rather ask, “what particularly interests you in this field, and what path do you see yourself taking?”. It’s basically the “where do you see yourself in five years”, only more specific. For instance, I lucked into Information Security through a temp job…I never had any intention of going into security, that’s just where I landed. But once I started working on SAP, I started envisioning where I could go from there, because I found it especially interesting. If you were hiring an SAP analyst from the get-go, someone should be able to tell you what trajectory they want to follow.

      1. Ask a Manager* Post author

        Yeah, I like to ask (when it’s not already clear), “How do you see this job fitting in with your longer-term career plans?”

        That said, I did used to sometimes ask intern candidates about their dream jobs, if I was having trouble getting an overall sense of them professionally, just to flesh out my understanding of who they were. It can be more useful with candidates without much work history to fill you in about them.

        1. Anonymous*

          Since I’ve always been a long-term career looking person, I’ve always answered these questions with my goal, and how this job will help me get there – and how my previous job also fit in. Since my resume shows me as a long term employee, I’ve found great success with this formula. And I’m happy to say that I keep growing as I’ve always wanted.

    2. Vicki*

      I have to say, from reading this blog and others, many many interview questions invite apprehension and dodgy answers.

      What’s your dream job?
      What are your weaknesses?
      Where do you see yourself in 5 years?
      Why shouldn’t we hire you?
      Are you nervous?
      Why do you want to work for our company?
      How many barbers are there in Detroit?

      How about if we concentrate on my strengths and whether I can do the job?

      1. Ask a Manager* Post author

        Because when you have tons of qualified candidates (and even when you don’t), hiring isn’t just about whether you can do the job. It’s also about how you’ll fit into the culture, what you’ll be like to manage, how long you’re likely to stick around, how you’ll get along with others, and how motivated you will be. If you’re approaching it as solely about demonstrating that you can do the job, you’re likely to end up satisfying only a small portion of what they’re seeking from an interview with you.

        1. Vicki*

          But do “dream job”, weaknesses, barbers, and “where do you see yourself in 5 years? answer any f those questions?

          If you want to know about work style, ask “tell me about a time when” questions. If you want to know wether I’ll fit into the culture, ask me what kind of culture I’ve worked with before and what it was like.

          Yes, there are more questions you can ask that will let you know _how_ I will do the job… without resorting to asking what kind of tree I would be.

            1. Vicki*

              Ok. I get that you believe that. And some others here do too.

              But for others of us, our “dream jobs” don’t match our realistic professional aspirations and never will. Or if they do (e.g. “my dream job is to do again what I did from 01/2007-11/2011”) then they’re going to think I won’t like the job I’m applying for.

              I can’t answer truthfully and I won’t lie. (not just my thought here; I’m echoing a lot of other commenters).
              We have to believe that the interviewer knows how to use the info. And, unless we’re lucky enough to be interviewing with someone we know is a follower of this blog, a lot of us are going to lump “dream job” in with the the “what game is she trying to lay here” types of questions.

              1. Ask a Manager* Post author

                This really isn’t that complicated — give an answer that explains how this job fits in with your professional aspirations. You can see everything an interviewer says or does as an adversarial power play if you want (which I mention because it’s a pattern in your comments), but it won’t help you get a job.

  2. Anon*

    I ask law students that sometimes when I’m interviewing them and the answer can affect whether we want to hire them, but I think it’s best for all parties, to be honest. I work for a firm that practices, oh, chocolate teapot law. We know it’s a niche field and we don’t expect them to be really well versed in all the nuances of it coming out of school. But we do want to hear something that makes us think they’ll enjoy it and want to put the effort into learning the field – so if they tell me about their interest in cotton candy cutlery, or even caramel furniture construction, there’s at least a spark of interest there. But we do get a lot of applicants who say that their dream job is doing something entirely unrelated and our experience in the past is that those candidates will end up going to do that sooner rather than later and it just makes more sense for us not to hire them.

    1. Anon*

      (And for clarification, I usually ask something like “where do you see yourself in five years?” rather than “what’s your dream job?”)

    2. Vicki*

      But why isn’t it ok that n 4 or 5 years they hope to move onward and upward if they do this job well for the next two years? (Maybe it’s different in Law than in Tech; maybe you expect them to stay until they retire.)

      1. Ask a Manager* Post author

        I think she answered that in her original comment: “But we do want to hear something that makes us think they’ll enjoy it and want to put the effort into learning the field “

  3. Julie*

    I was in a similar situation when I was applying to jobs for several years out of school. I tried for a long time to get a job teaching college, which I’m qualified for but was facing a lot of more-qualified competition. (The humanities teaching market is amazingly over-saturated right now.)

    When I finally gave up on the idea of teaching at college, I started looking for basic entry-level admin jobs. When I was asked about my dream job, I’d be honest, but nuance it: “In a perfect world, I’d teach college, but that field doesn’t have a lot of openings right now. Instead, I’d love to one day move up in a company like this one and start taking on a training/mentoring role.”

    So while the employer knows that this isn’t perfect for me, they also know that I’d be happy to one day take those passions for teaching and use them in a business context, which works for everyone. (Full disclosure: My current 2-person office does not have any training positions, but we are involved in organizing continuing professional development for doctors, nurses, and lab techs, which is close enough in my books.)

    1. AdAgencyChick*

      This. My real dream job is quiz show writer, but those jobs are few, far between, and pay peanuts. So when I get this question I say, “I’d love to write for Jeopardy, but that will never happen so I’m glad I get to write clever copy in this industry.” I think when you’re able to show the interviewer that you have no intention of ditching them in a couple of years when your dream company hires you, and that you can find something to love about what you do for the hiring company, you’re fine.

      1. MarBar*

        I once answered this question by saying that I’d love to be the person who comes up with names for OPI nail polish — such as “I’m Not Really a Waitress Red” — but, since there’s just the one job like that and the person who holds it is unlikely to give it up any time soon, the job I was applying for would be a great fallback. Wouldn’t have done this with every interviewer, but the woman interviewing me had a meticulous manicure, so I figured this would be okay.

        1. Risa*

          As an interviewer, I would love this answer. And I only use OPI and always try to find the color with the “best” name for my pedicure.

      2. Piper*

        This. My dream job is performing on Broadway and I even started my college career in musical theatre and vocal performance, but since I didn’t want to live in a cardboard box on a street corner in NYC while I tried to “make it,” I decided to take a more realistic career path in web development and digital marketing. I’ve used this answer before as well.

        I’ve also encountered questions because I have two part-time gigs (photography and designing jewelry), and interviewers wonder if I’d rather be doing that full-time. I’ve explained that I like those things as part-time because they are hobbies that still allow me to flex the entrepreneurship muscles, earn some extra cash, and get the creative energy out, but I also don’t want to spoil them by doing them full-time.

  4. Your Mileage May Vary*

    My dream job is never going to line up with what I’m applying to but a girl’s gotta eat. So, I usually say something like, “When I win the lottery, I’m going to do [dream thing] but until then, I’m so excited to be breaking into [what I’m applying for].” I think the lottery reference underscores how my dream job is really a dream and not at all rooted into reality.

    1. Anonymous*

      A dream job is one I wouldn’t leave just because I won the lottery (well, I didn’t skip enough maths lessons for that, but you get the point).

    2. Kimberlee, Esq.*

      I like this answer too, because it says what you would be doing if you didn’t *have* to do anything, which is slightly different than Dream Job, but still interesting. As a hiring manager, I do like to hear about dream jobs and hobbies and quirks that candidates think are totally unrelated to the job they’re applying for, because I start getting ideas as soon as I know that the new intern speaks Chinese or loves writing trivia questions or wants to be President of the United States or whatever.

      It’s always best to relate it to what you’re applying for, but remember that the hiring manager knows a lot more about the job than you do… they can manage some of the relating in their own imaginations. :)

  5. Maire*

    I think this is a really unnecessary question; how many people are actually doing their dream job?
    I mean, is it not bad enough that employers have a monopoly on your time without wanting a monopoly on your dreams as well?
    Ok, i’m being facetious here but seriously, how many people dream about getting into admin? Is it not good enough that you do your job well without having topretend that it’s your life passion?

    1. Long Time Admin*

      Stop slamming admins. I invite you to come here and try to do my job for a week.

      For some of us, being an excellent administrative professional is the Mt. Everest of goals.

      1. Ask a Manager* Post author

        I didn’t read that as a slam, just an acknowledgement that many people in admin jobs aren’t doing it because it’s their dream job, at least initially. That’s true of many careers, but isn’t a slam on their value.

      2. Julie*

        Nothing wrong with being an admin. I am one, and I consider it a mark of pride to do my job well and make sure my boss has what he needs, before he needs it. Moreover, the admins at both my colleges programs (undergrad and graduate school) were wonderful super-secretaries, without whom the entire department would fall apart. They were awesome. Point finale.

        That said, I’d be willing to bet that even those super-secretaries did not sit around in kindergarten thinking they’d go into admin when they grew up. Maybe now, they’d consider what they’re doing to be their dream jobs, but most people do not think this way until they actually fall into an admin job and realize they love doing it.

      3. Piper*

        I didn’t really take this as a slam to admins, but then, I’m not an admin so maybe that’s why. I think you could insert a lot of jobs into that statement. I think the term “dream job” has the connotation of being “unrealistic, perfect world job possibly unrelated to the skills you actually possess” (like Cirque de Soleil performer or something), and the reality is most people (even admins) might not be working in those kinds of jobs. That doesn’t mean they don’t like, or even love their current job, or that it’s bad to like or love what you’re doing even if it’s not your “dream,” but isn’t there something, some kind of complete stretch perfect-world-if-all-the-stars-aligned scenario that would be even more fun?

      4. Maire*

        Yeah, that really wasn’t meant to disparage admins; I’ve been in administration and I’m not denying its difficulty or its necessity. I’m just pointing out that you don’t initially get into admin because its your dream job. Once you get into the job, it’s certainly possible to get very invested in it and want to be the best you can be but I doubt that that anyone has it in mind as their “dream job” when they first start out.

    2. Piper*

      I agree with this one. I don’t think it’s a very good question. Just like I hate the “where do you see yourself in five years” question. When I used to hire people, I never used either of these.

  6. OP*

    Thanks Alison, what you say totally makes sense. I was leaning toward that conclusion myself as i was writing. In retrospect I think i was a bit too quick to answer and should have paused and thought it through. The comments are very helpful too. I liked the lottery winning approach by Your Mileage May Vary, pretty funny.

  7. Just Me*

    I agree. Really, most of the jobs I have applied too are not ” dream” jobs. They are not career jobs. There is little room for upward mobility. They are just jobs.

    You get jobs to pay bills and hopefully afford to go on vacation once in a while. And if you at least like the job that is great.

    But really, the question is kind of dumb. I agree with the other posters who have variations on the question or how to respond.

    I know they are looking for fit, for stability and all that but that can be determined with other questions.

    I would love to ask the interviewer back…. So ,what do you love about this job… and have it be a call center where you are yelled at a lot or a fast food place where you have to clean the toilets. I’d love to hear their answer. I doubt greatly most love it. They do it like all the rest. it is a job.

    If I applied at a library I can honestly say.. I love reading. I love history. I love talking to people about books. That is a dream job.

    1. Not So NewReader*

      I agree with you, Just Me.
      I don’t care for the questions about dream jobs and five year projections. I think it is because I am too practical sometimes. And I have a fondness for timely mortgage payments.

      However, I think the question about “how do you see this job fitting in with your longer term career plans” as a thoughtful question.

      I do wonder, though, do these types of questions cause employers to lose candidates. I picture the candidate going home and mulling it over. “Gee, I really don’t see myself working THERE five years from now.”

      Sadly, I have seen too many instances where a candidate expressed interest in learning and being promoted and that was used against the candidate after being hired.

  8. Karl Sakas*

    I don’t ask candidates about dream jobs or “where do you see yourself in five years?” Instead, I’m paying attention to whether the person is excited about the industry (in my case, marketing and web design), my company, and the job itself.

    If they mention trends or experts they follow or groups they’re involved in, that’s a good sign. It’s also a good sign when they ask a lot of thoughtful questions around my company’s future plans. When someone has zero questions, I assume they’re not particularly interested in the job.

    I love Alison’s “how do you see this job fitting in with your longer-term career plans?” question–I need to start using that.

  9. Rana*

    Oof, what a question. I dislike things like this because it always feels like there’s little way to answer them honestly without shooting yourself in the foot. In my case, I know precisely what my dream job would be, because I had it for a year while filling in for someone else. The problem is that the market has shifted away from the conditions under which a person like myself could be hired for a job like that. I was very good at what did, but the person holding that particular position wasn’t leaving any time soon (as in, not for decades). Similar jobs were highly sought after, by other very good candidates. I gave it a good run for another five years, but had to accept the writing on the wall, and give up on that dream. In the process I had to rethink who I had been for nearly a decade, and mourn the loss of a dream and an identity, and everything I’d sacrificed in pursuit of it, and, honestly, I still have scars from it.

    So I’m now a bit touchy about being asked about my “dream job” because what I’ve learned is that what you want doesn’t have all that much to do with what you can actually have, and it’s too costly in terms of emotion and energy to keep chasing after fantasies. I’d rather have a job where I feel competent and self-sufficient and believe that the work I do has value, than waste more time aiming for an unobtainable “dream job.”

    Somehow, I doubt this sort of bitter introspection is what interviewers are expecting when they ask about dream jobs.

    1. Julie*

      One thing you might want to do is see if any of the aspects of the “dream job” that you did could be applied to other jobs or volunteering instead. For me, I would love to be a college professor, but that’s impractical given the very small number of openings and very large number of more-qualified candidates. On the other hand, I know that the aspect of being a professor I like most is the ability to teach students and see the “aha!” moment in their eyes. So I chose to focus on moving into a more training role at my company and on teaching karate outside of work.

      Someone who was a chef but who can no longer do that because the requirements have changed might instead go into business as a personal chef, become a private culinary instructor, or work for a cooking blog. It’s not *exactly* what you want, but it’s close enough to keep you satisfied and stave off the bitterness.

      Is there anything aspect of that “dream job” you did for a year that you could still use, even if it’s not exactly your “dream job” anymore?

      1. Rana*

        I am using some of the skills, yes, but it was a pretty specific combination of things. (It was a college professor job, in fact!) And I did look into several related fields, but they’re experiencing the same terrible market conditions – too many (over)qualified candidates, not enough funding, not enough jobs. So I ended up doing what I could do (teach), which was never what I particularly wanted to do, and it was a mistake. Among other things it took time away from keeping up my skills in areas that I did enjoy (like research), and I’m no longer competitive in those areas as a result.

        Basically, if I’d given up the attempts to make it work earlier, I’d be in a better place now, instead of trying to play catch-up for was was pretty much a lost decade.

        1. Anonymous*

          Basically, if I’d given up the attempts to make it work earlier, I’d be in a better place now, instead of trying to play catch-up for was was pretty much a lost decade

          I know that feeling. Fortunately for me, the subsequent near-tripling of my income has done much to assuage the grief you mention.

        1. PollyB*

          My goodness Rana I am at those very crossroads right now. Been working hard towards becoming a permanent academic, but yes, the market is very competitive (I’m in Australia) and positions are rare to come by.
          I have been reading AAM for a couple of months now to get tips on how to ‘transition’ out into something that will fit my skills and will be a bit less stressful.

  10. Dan*

    I hate the 5 year question too. Last time I was asked that at an interview, my response was “since it takes awhile to actually get good at this, hopefully I’m sitting in the same chair with a senior title”. They told me it takes ten years to become “senior” at that company. I so wanted to ask the guy what answer he was looking for then.

    And my sentiment then was correct, because I’m about to start year #5 at my present job (not the one I interviewed at above.) And guess what? I’m sitting in my same cube, with one promotion under my belt. Granted, I have a few more responsibilities and work quite independently, but still, my job hasn’t changed all that much from when I started. Oh, I’m still learning new things and get new challenges along the way, so I haven’t stagnated yet.

    A better way to answer that question might be to ask what kind of challenges will I be facing in five years? If they tell me I will master the job after two, and it’ll be quite routine, I’d probably pass. They should be talking about increased responsibilities and what not. If I’m literally sitting in the same chair doing the same work…

  11. Anonymous*

    I hate this question.

    My dream job is to be a zoologist or a Vet, however I’m so squeamish and know I could never put down an animal so I know it isn’t a job I could actually do ha!

    When asked this question, I always say to be the HR Director of a large and successful company. While this is a complete lie, it is in line with my current career so it makes sense to employers. I think when employers ask this, they are trying to see where their current role fits in with the path your ultimately want your career to go in.

  12. kasey*

    Ugh, I really hope I am never asked this, I doubt (open water) Provisioner, Subsistence Farmer or Super Crafter would really satisfy . ;) I think the question is a little lame or maybe the asker too thin skinned if they truly expect an answer moored in reality when using a words like dream job.

  13. Long Time Admin*

    Job seekers need to understand that when an employer asks about their dream jobs, the employer is not interested in helping them get their dream jobs, unless it’s related to the job/company the job seeker applied for. It does make a lot more sense for interviewers to ask why you’re interested in this job/industry/company, but then again, who ever said all interviewers are sensible?

    It might be a good idea to think beforehand about ways to change the focus if you’re asked this question, so that your answer will be more in line with why you want to work at this job/in this industry or for this company.

    Sometimes interviewing is like dancing barefoot on hot coals.

  14. Mike B.*

    I don’t like this question, but in this case I think it was probably possible to triangulate a good case for the job at–not the same field, but some parallels. OP will presumably pick that up with practice.

    I’m more interested in the daughter participating, which is a red flag to me. If she’s involved in the decision-making process to the extent of interviewing candidates, is she also going to be giving orders? That’s a little loosey-goosey for an organization big enough to have formal titles and VP rank.

    1. Piper*

      I don’t know. I worked somewhere that was really small, but the owner doled out VP titles to everyone. It was stupid. People who were 23 had VP titles. And his wife (who did not work for the company) participated in projects and interviews and other such things. I had the pleasure of having to work with her on a marketing project because she just had a “fantastic sense of design” (if the definition of “fantastic” was clueless). It was a highly dysfunctional workplace.

      So yeah. I’d be concerned that the daughter was in the interview. That’s not really appropriate on any level, no matter how large or small the company is.

  15. Tmm*

    Sometimes this question is to get a determination of fit as opposed to seeing if you are truly interested in the job. I often ask applicants a variation of this question, what would they do if they weren’t already a (lawyer, exec admin, accountant) . I have gotten some surprising answers like one quiet woman told me she would love to be a race car driver coz she enjoys the thrill. For me, their answers can give a great insight into their personality which I might not get from the standard questions they prepared to answer.

  16. anon-2*

    Yeah, I once interviewed a guy for a data base administrator’s job, who said it was his long-term goal to design highway systems.

    Now – that turned me off — and the others in my group – because, his career ambitions were not to be an IS/IT/Data Processing professional. I will admit that the turnover in any site was rather short-term in those days, but we did not regard the position as a temporary vehicle to make money while you pursue another dream.

    1. Mike*

      Did you follow up with the answer he gave with, “Why are did you apply for this, job then?” or did you just smile and nod and write a note down? I’m being a bit cheeky, but I do understand that among many candidates you might not want to pick the one who openly admitted he wanted to be a highway designer. However, would your reaction have been different if you asked, “What’s your dream job?” instead of asking about a long term goal. It’s confusing to hear on this thread and with people I talk with that hiring managers know that we all have dreams and the reality of the world is we work in jobs that may not be glamorous or our dream, but yet they want you to come into the job saying that what you’re interviewing for is their dream job? How do we navigate that?

      1. Ask a Manager* Post author

        To be clear, people asking this question aren’t expecting to hear that this job is your dream job — but they’re hoping to hear an answer that indicates that this job is a step on the path there or relates to it in some way. They want to understand how this job fits in with your larger career goals.

  17. Omne*

    I’ve always found it easier to simply ask ” What interests you about working here?”

    It gives them a chance to explain their interests, long term goals, short term goals and how much research they’ve actually done before the interview.

  18. Mike*

    Can someone address answering this question without making it seem like you want to move out of the position through a promotion right away? I interviewed for a permanent position where I’m temping and the REAL reason I wanted the job was so I could get an entry level position in the marketing division so that one day I could work my way up to a position in communcations (the position was just data entry). Now, according to what I’ve read, that would have sent up red flags: “Oh, he doesn’t really want THIS job, he wants to use it as a stepping stone.” How do you answer the “dream job” or the “where do you see yourself” or the “what are your career goals” question while being honest but not seeming like you’re not gonna commit to the job at hand?

    1. Ask a Manager* Post author

      Well, the question assumes that the dream job might be a long ways off — it’s really about what you’d like to work toward, as opposed to what you realistically think you could be doing tomorrow.

  19. Elizabeth West*

    I’ve only been asked this question once; the variant is usually the “Where do you see yourself in five years?” question. I know what they want. I usually try to say something vague like I would like to be at the same company on a learning track toward more intensive contributions, and throw something in that relates to the job. If they’re going to use business bullspeak on me, I can use it on them also!

    Sometimes I joke, “Well, assuming I’m not on the bestseller list…” then say it. But I guess I must not be doing any of it right because I still don’t have a stinking job.

  20. Vicki*

    When I was growing up, my Dream Job was to be one of the people who builds the dioramas in museums.

    Then I joined the Thespians in HS and worked props for a few years. So now my Dream Job would be to work props and sets for a TV show like Buffy The Vampire Slayer, or be a model maker with Nick Park and do “backstage work on the next Wallace and Grommit film!

    None of which is going to happen because I don;t like the hours, don’t have the background, truly am not artistic enough, and won;t move to LA or London. And while this all makes for an interesting comment in AAM (or blog post elsewhere), it has nothing to do with whether I’ll be a great content manager for your software development team.

    That’s why they call it a “dream” job. You eventually wake up and go to work.

  21. Your Boss*

    I never ever ask this question because really how does it help me to get to know you better? People who are trying to get a job will not answer this question honestly. They will tailor their response to that job they are interviewing for. I hate this question. I’ve been asked it once and, of course, I lied. :)

  22. Vicki*

    Hmmm. First question for the interviewer before the interview gets going: Do you read the AAM blog?

    Depending on the answer, we have a baseline for what kind of interview this might be.

  23. Jer*

    I was asked this type of question once.

    I was stunned because I wasn’t sure how to answer it. It was a job that I had experience doing as a part timer but this company was looking for the exact same thing, the only difference was as a full timer.

    My initial thought was, “What a stupid question? It’s on my resume that I’m currently doing this part time. Why would I apply for a full time position if I didn’t like it?” … then I thought “Taking pictures of nude models in paris.”

    Not wanting to tell the interviewer that, I simple said. “I like this job and I’m good at it because I have a good amount of experience doing it.

    I didn’t get the job sadly but I wonder if my hesitation to that question threw the interviewer off.

  24. Hemlock*

    I like this question in interviews, because I have an off the wall answer. My answer is “Anything? I would want to be one of the first colonists on Mars. “

Comments are closed.