What Do You Have to Do to Be Successful in This Career?

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When interviewing for a position there is a good chance you will be asked the interview question- “What do you have to do to be successful in this career?” This is a common question- but it can take many different forms. Sometimes you may be asked- “Why should we hire you?” or “How are you qualified?” but all these interview questions have similar ideas behind them.

In any of these cases interviewers are interested in knowing what qualities you value the most. In other words- they want to know where your priorities are- so they can get an idea of how you will perform the job. To provide the best answer possible you should prepare for this question or one similar to it before the interview begins. Learn how to tackle this question by taking a look at the following sample answers.

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How to Answer the ‘What Do You Have to Do to Be Successful in This Career?’ Interview Question

Your Answer Should Be Relevant to the Position: It is easy to answer these interview questions with general answers- but you will not impress the interviewer unless you get specific. Before the interview consider what kind of work you would be doing if you were hired. This information will be beneficial regardless of whether you are asked this question specifically. Determine what qualities apply themselves directly to the position. If it is a leadership position- consider qualities such as patience or communication. If it involves customer interaction you might talk about your interpersonal skills. There are many ways to answer- but be brief and specific. It is also important not to ramble. Think of two or three answers and stick to them. Listing many qualities only invalidates all of them.

Find a Way to Stand Out: If you are being asked the question “What do you have to do to be successful in this career?” you can bet every other interviewee is asked it as well. If you give a typical answer there is a high chance others will give the same answer and the interviewer will not have any reason to choose you specifically. Sometimes being prepared for this question and answering without hesitation may make you stand out from the crowd- but you should try to have at least one answer that no one else will have. As long as it is relevant and acceptable- you might consider a quality that is unexpected. Be sure to explain why each quality you list is important to you and the position. The explanation behind the answer is actually more important than the answer itself because it gives a window into the way you think- which is what they are actually interested in.

Always Be Genuine: Perhaps most importantly- be truthful. This is a personal interview question about you and your work ethic. You are not doing yourself any favors by making an answer up. Interviewers are very talented at spotting when the truth is being stretched. Because this is a personal question- you should give a personal answer. If you boast about your communication skills you must demonstrate them through the rest of the interview and other exchanges. To answer this or similar interview questions successfully requires a great deal of reflection and personal evaluation- which cannot be done on the spot or faked. While it might not significantly hurt your chances to give a vague or impersonal answer- you are missing out on an excellent opportunity to really blow the interviewer away.

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Sample ‘What Do You Have to Do to Be Successful in This Career?’ Interview Answers

1. Because the position I am applying for is in management- I think the most important thing to do is communicate. I’ve always felt that the ability to connect with people is at the heart of leadership. That allows you to know when they need help and allows them to follow your lead without being confused. I’ve always prioritized communication in all my other jobs and I think it contributed to my success. Additionally- I think success in this career requires a great attention to detail. Being able to handle the little stuff means we are better prepared for the big stuff.

2. Simply put- the most important aspect for success in this career is hard work. It isn’t pretty but I’ve always found that those who are not cut out for rolling up their sleeves and getting to work always drop out. Keeping this in mind- I always strive to work my hardest- knowing that it really does make a difference. I also prioritize teamwork in my career. It is simply not possible for one person to do everything- but even if it was it wouldn’t be as effective as a whole group of people working together.

Use this information to really prepare for when the interviewer asks you about the qualities for success in your career- to give an answer that paints you in the best light possible.

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