Job interviews can be nerve-wracking experiences. Interviews are about presenting the best version of yourself, and when asked what motivates you, it is essential to answer the question honestly and intentionally.
They often involve questions about your background, skills, and experience. But perhaps one of the most challenging questions to answer is, “What motivates you?”
This question is tricky because it requires some self-reflection and honesty. Employers ask this question to determine your values, goals, and whether you are a good fit for the job and company culture.
Let’s learn why employers ask about your motivation and what drives you and provide guidance on responding to leave a favorable impression.
How To Answer What Motivates You Interview Question?
Before jumping on to the answer, let’s understand the importance of this question. The solution to this question would allow the hiring manager to understand your mindset regarding the position and work.
Hence while answering this question, craft the answer that makes you the perfect fit for the vacant position. Here are a few critical factors in preparing a great answer to this question:
Understanding the Question
Before we dive into how to answer the question, let’s first understand what it means. For example, inquiring about your motivation, an interviewer might ask: they try to get a sense of what drives you, gets you out of bed in the morning, and fuels your passion.
They are interested in discovering the driving force that keeps you motivated and resilient during challenging times.
This question lets employers assess your compatibility with the position and the organization’s culture.
For example, if you say you are motivated by working independently but require much collaboration, the employer may decide that you could be a better fit.
In other words, the “what motivates you?” A question is not just a way to break the ice; it’s an essential part of the interview process. Your answer can reveal your personality, work style, and values.
Identifying Your Motivations
Now that we understand the question, let’s explore how to identify our motivations. Identifying what motivates you requires some self-reflection.
First, you need to consider what makes you excited, what you enjoy doing, and what makes you feel fulfilled. Here are some questions to help you get started:
- What activities do you want to do in your free time?
- What do you find rewarding about your current job or past jobs?
- What types of projects or tasks do you look forward to working on?
Once you have identified your motivations, you can tailor your answer to the job and company you are applying for.
How To Crafting Your Answer? “What Motivates You?”
There is no one-size-fits-all approach when answering the “what motivates you?” question. Instead, your answer should be tailored to the job and company you are applying for.
However, there are a few general tips to keep in mind:
First and foremost, you should be honest in your answer. Only try to answer what you think the interviewer wants to hear.
You must be truthful about your motivations to avoid coming across as disingenuous or untrustworthy.
Moreover, your answer may need to align with the company’s values and culture, which could lead to a poor fit.
Highlight Your Strengths
In your response, you must showcase your strengths and illustrate how your motivations align with the position and the company’s culture.
For example, if the company values teamwork, highlight how you enjoy collaborating with others and find it rewarding.
Employers want to hire people who are passionate about their work. Therefore, you should show enthusiasm and excitement in your answer.
A strong passion for your work increases the likelihood of being fully engaged and productive, resulting in potential benefits for the company.
Finally, you should be specific in your answer.
Don’t give a vague or generic answer. Instead, use examples to demonstrate your motivations.
Demonstrate Passion and Enthusiasm
Employers are looking for individuals who are passionate and enthusiastic about their work. Therefore, when answering the question, it is essential to demonstrate your excitement and passion for the job and company.
You can do this by talking about why you are interested in the company and how the position aligns with your long-term career goals.
Additionally, you can share examples of how your past experiences have demonstrated your passion and enthusiasm for your work.
Highlight Your Achievements
Employers want to know what you have achieved in your past roles and how it has motivated you to do more.
Therefore, when answering the question, it is essential to highlight your achievements and how they have motivated you to keep pushing forward.
You can share examples of your successes, challenges, and how you overcame them.
Additionally, you can discuss how your achievements align with the job and the company’s values and goals.
Demonstrate Teamwork and Collaboration Skills
Most companies value teamwork and collaboration, so they want to hire individuals who can work well with others.
Therefore, it is essential to highlight your teamwork and collaboration skills when answering the question.
For example, you can share examples of how you have worked with others and how it has motivated you to be a better team player.
Additionally, you can discuss how your teamwork and collaboration skills align with the company’s values and goals.
Research the Company and the Position
Before going to the interview, it is essential to research the company and the position you are applying for.
By doing so, you will better understand the company’s values and goals and how the position aligns with them.
Additionally, you will better understand the skills and experience required for the position.
Discuss the Company’s Mission and Values
Discussing the company’s mission and values is essential when answering the question. Employers want to know if your values and goals align with the company’s mission.
Therefore, you can research the company’s mission statement and values and share how they resonate with you.
Additionally, you can discuss how you plan to contribute to the company’s mission and values.
Highlight Learning and Growth Opportunities
Employers want to hire individuals who are motivated to learn and grow. Therefore, when answering the question, it is essential to highlight your desire to learn and grow in the job and company.
You can discuss how you plan to learn and grow in the position and the opportunities the company provides for learning and growth.
Additionally, you can share examples of how your past experiences have motivated you to learn and grow in your career.
Show Your Problem-Solving Skills
Problem-solving skills are valuable in any job; therefore, employers want to hire motivated individuals to solve problems.
Therefore, when answering the question, it is essential to highlight your problem-solving skills and how they have motivated you to be a better problem-solver.
You can do this by sharing examples of how you have solved problems in the past and how it has motivated you to keep solving problems.
Additionally, you can discuss how your problem-solving skills align with the company’s values and goals.
Discuss Your Work Ethic
Employers want to hire individuals who have a strong work ethic and are motivated to work hard.
Therefore, discussing your work ethic and how it has motivated you to be a hard worker is essential when answering the question.
One way to achieve this is by providing instances of your past hard work and explaining how it has motivated you to continue striving.
Additionally, you can discuss how your work ethic aligns with the company’s values and goals.
“What Motivates You?” Things To Keep In Mind
During a job interview, one of the most common questions is, “What motivates you?” It’s an essential question because it gives the interviewer insight into what drives you, your passion, and what you’ll bring to the role if you’re hired.
However, knowing what not to say when answering this question is equally important.
So here are a few things you make sure not to say while answering this question:
Don’t Be Vague
So it’s essential to be specific when answering this question.
First, talk about what motivates you explicitly, such as a passion for helping others, a desire to learn new things, or a sense of accomplishment when you complete a project.
Don’t Be Dishonest
Being dishonest in a job interview is never a good idea, especially when answering what motivates you.
Only makeup motivations you think will impress the interviewer if true.
If you say you’re motivated by teamwork but prefer working alone, it will eventually become apparent to your employer. Honesty is always the best policy.
Don’t Focus Solely on Money
While money may motivate many people, it’s not the only thing that should be discussed during a job interview.
If you only talk about money when answering what motivates you, you may be greedy or shallow.
Instead, focus on other things that motivate you, such as personal growth, the opportunity to make a difference, or the ability to work with a team.
Don’t Focus Solely on the Job Itself
While the job itself may motivate you, it’s important not to focus solely on the job when answering what motivates you.
Instead, talk about what the job allows you to do or accomplish. For example, Your motivation could stem from the chance to tackle new and stimulating projects, make meaningful contributions to the company’s achievements, or acquire novel abilities and technologies.
Don’t Give a Generic Answer
Another mistake to avoid when answering what motivates you is giving a generic answer. Your answer should be unique to you and your personality rather than something that sounds like it could apply to anyone.
For example, don’t say, “I’m motivated by challenges” or “I’m motivated by success.”
Instead, talk about specific things that motivate you in your work, such as the opportunity to learn from your colleagues, the chance to work with cutting-edge technology, or the satisfaction of seeing a project through to completion.
Don’t Discuss Irrelevant Topics
It’s essential to stay on topic when answering what motivates you. Avoid discussing things irrelevant to the job, such as personal hobbies or interests unrelated to the position.
While discussing your passions is okay, ensure they’re related to the job. Additionally, avoid discussing controversial or sensitive topics that could create a negative impression on the interviewer.
While being honest when answering what motivates you is essential, it’s also important not to overshare.
Avoid discussing personal or sensitive information that could make the interviewer uncomfortable or create an awkward situation.
Remember that this is a professional interview, and you should maintain professionalism in your answers.
Don’t Sound Insincere
When discussing what motivates you, it’s essential to be sincere. Only try to give a response you think the interviewer wants to hear if it’s genuine.
This will make you seem insincere and untrustworthy, which is not a good look in a job interview. Instead, be honest and authentic when discussing your motivations.
For example, if you’re applying for a job in the non-profit sector, you’re motivated by a desire to make a positive impact in the world.
This sincere and genuine motivation will make you seem passionate and committed to your work.
Don’t Be Negative
One of the most critical mistakes you can make when discussing what motivates you is being negative. Avoid speaking in a pessimistic or derogatory way, even if you feel discouraged about your current situation.
Instead, try to stay positive and forward-thinking. This will help you present yourself as an optimistic, confident, and motivated candidate.
When it comes to motivation, I’m driven by a sense of purpose and the desire to make a meaningful impact. I find that setting clear goals and working towards them gives me a sense of direction and focus, which helps me stay motivated even when faced with challenges.
Additionally, I thrive in environments where there is a culture of learning and growth. I’m always eager to develop new skills and take on new challenges, and I find that working in a team that values continuous improvement is both stimulating and fulfilling.
Finally, I believe that a positive work-life balance is essential for maintaining motivation and well-being. When I have time to recharge and pursue my hobbies and interests outside of work, I find that I’m able to bring more energy and enthusiasm to my job.
What Motivates You To Apply For This Position? Answer Examples
I was immediately drawn to this position because it aligns with my career goals and aspirations. The job description highlights the opportunity to work on challenging projects and collaborate with a team of talented professionals, which excites me.
Furthermore, I’m passionate about the company’s mission and values. This organization values innovation, teamwork, and customer satisfaction, which are all values that I share.
Working for a company that aligns with my values is important for my job satisfaction and motivation.
In addition, the growth opportunities offered by this position are particularly appealing to me. I’m excited about the possibility of developing new skills, taking on leadership roles, and making a meaningful impact on the company’s success.
I’m confident that this position will provide the kind of challenges and opportunities for growth that will keep me motivated and engaged for years to come.
What Motivates You To Do A Good Job Answer?
I believe that doing a good job is its own reward. I take pride in my work and am committed to producing high-quality results, regardless of the task.
Additionally, I’m motivated by the desire to contribute to the success of my team and organization.
I recognize that my work is part of a greater effort, and I’m committed to doing my part to help achieve our goals. Seeing that my work has made a positive impact gives me a sense of satisfaction and pride.
Furthermore, I find that setting clear goals and expectations helps keep me motivated.
When I clearly understand what’s expected of me and what success looks like, it’s easier to stay focused and engaged.
Finally, I believe that a positive work environment is essential for maintaining motivation and doing good work. I’m more likely to be motivated and productive when I feel supported, valued, and respected by my colleagues and managers.
The question “what motivates you?” is vital to the job interview process. It allows employers to get to know you better, understand your work style, and determine whether you are a good fit for the job and the company culture.
To answer this question, you must identify your motivations through self-reflection, be honest, highlight your strengths, show passion and enthusiasm, be specific, and demonstrate your teamwork and collaboration skills.
Doing so can create a favorable impression on the interviewer and enhance your prospects of securing the position. Remember, a thoughtful and genuine answer to this question can make all the difference in securing the position of your dreams.
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