Learn How to Successfully Talk About Your Goals in your Job Interview!

Here at Tecla, we want to continue giving you the best experience within our Community. That's why we've partnered with Amelia Posleman from the English Academy iSpeak

In her first Blog, she will teach us how to be successful talking about our goals in our next Job Interview. 


One of the most important questions in a job interview is: 

“Tell me about your goals”

Besides preparing a good speech for your answer it becomes crucial to know the difference between Goal and Target.

Now grab a pen and paper and jot this down! 

Goal: is used when talking about any objective, in general.
For example,
our goal is to improve profitability with the app. 

Target: is used when talking about a specific goal, most times expressed in numbers. For example, my target is to reach 500 new subscribers by the end of the month. 

Have you noticed how important it is to know the difference before using these words? 

Even though they appear to be quite similar, their meaning is not the same. Now, you might be wondering, what’s the appropriate way to answer this question in English. You've come to the right place to know the answer.   

Let’s see how!

Let’s start by learning the basics. To respond to any question in which you want to talk about your goals or aspirations, you must include the simple future or future with will.

I hope I will hold a high-ranking position in this company.

Now if you want to talk about what you’re doing to accomplish that goal, you must use the present continuous.

I’m taking technical courses and working on my teamwork skills. 

At i.speak, we created a great method to help you develop your answer. 

The COA method: Context, Objectives, Action.

Remember that your answer must be based on your short-term goals. Therefore, these must be consistent with your long-term goal. But before sharing an example, let’s go over the difference between long-term and short-term goals.

Short-term goals are small measurable steps you need to take to reach the finish line.

Here is an illustrative example: 

You want to go to your apartment which is on the 10th floor of the building. The elevator is out of service so you have to take the stairs. Think of the stairs, step by step, as the necessary goals to get to your apartment door which is the finish line.  

Now let’s take a look at a similar example but in a professional setting.

  • Long-term goal: You want to become a web developer.
  • Short-term goals: To reach the above-mentioned long-term goal, you have to take courses and learn about the different programming languages that are necessary for the job.

If you’re clear about these two concepts you will be able to answer questions similar to:

  • How do you see yourself in 5 years?
  • Tell me about your professional and personal goals.  

Using the COA method

What are your short-term and long-term goals? 

C - Context: Briefly explain here why you have set that long-term goal.

I have more than 5 years of experience developing software in different languages. I have joined many teams and worked on various projects. 

O - Objective: Now talk about the long-term goal you have. 

I want to become a team leader in 5 years. 

A - Action:

In order to become a team leader, I am taking an English course for professionals to reach an advanced level of English. I'm also working on improving my soft skills, specifically my Emotional Intelligence. 

You want to let them know that you’re working on your long-term goal and that your short-term goals are clear.

And finally, remember that the better prepared your interview is, the better results you will have. If you want to take the next step towards your career goals, don't hesitate to contact us at TECLA

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We’ve had great results with TECLA’s recruiting. The developers we hired allowed us to drastically increase the pace of our development process and try new things more efficiently. This is crucial for us as we continue to grow!

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