How to Answer the Question: ‘Why Do You Want to Work for Our Company?’

“Why do you want to work for our company?” is an interview question that many members of my career mentoring site have a difficult time answering.  My friend Christine Allen has some great thoughts on this topic and she has agreed to share them here…

A job interview is a challenge. You need to dress properly, you need to behave properly and you need to react to interviewers’ questions properly. When they ask ‘Why do you want to work for our company?‘ question, you might feel as if you are dancing on burning coals. You understand that this is not a straight-forward question. You feel that there is a trick, but you cannot catch it to give a proper answer. Still, you want to satisfy interviewer and demonstrate your ability to find answers even on such ambiguous questions.

You are right. Interviewers ask this question not because they want to hear glorification of the company. They want to understand if you have made research, if you have read about this company, its products, and corporate culture, and if you are actually interested in cooperating with them.

Two answers in one question

Why do you want to work for our company?‘  a question presupposes answer to 2 more dynamic question: ‘Why do you want to take this exact position?’ and ‘Why have you chosen this exact company?’. Some interviewees answer this question straightly: ‘Because I need money’. However, if you want to get this position, you need to be less direct with your answer. Find some arguments that will show that you really want to work for this company because you are actually interested in these responsibilities.  It is better to use some points from your resume to show why you applied for this position with this company.

Before applying for a job, you should always study company background. Before going to interview, you need to know everything possible about company’s products, history, and achievements. You can find this information on the web. It will take a few minutes, but it will give you the advantage in getting the position.

5 types of answers you should avoid

Although interviewees know that they need to prepare an answer to this question in advance, still they forget about that. If you have no time for research, you should at least avoid mistakes. There are several types of answer that will destroy your interview.

‘I have no job, no money, and you are the only company to invite me’.

This is an honest answer, and honesty is its only advantage though quite controversial. Even if you are really desperate to find a job and this is your last chance to get hired, you should never tell this to the interviewer. You should respect yourself, your knowledge, and your professional skill.

‘You are a great company with great product, and I have ever dreamt being a part of your team’.

If you want to tell the interviewer that you admire this company, it is better to tell this in different words. For example, you can tell how you used company’s products and that you were satisfied with the quality. Be more specific with your answer, do not use general phrases.

‘I do not know.’

No one will hire an apathetic person who does not care about the company. Be pro-active even during your interview; avoid hesitations, ‘don’t know’ phrases and mumbling.

‘I do not need to work for you, but you need me!’

You do not make a favor. You are looking for a position, and a company is looking for a professional employee with relevant experience. Do not be self-confident especially if you do not have enough skill and experience. Even if you do, respect the interviewer. If there is a way you react to uncomfortable questions, control your behavior not to spoil the results of the interview.

‘Please hire me; I want to join your company so much! I’m begging you!’

If you start to beg your interviewer to hire you, it is likely that your interview will end this conversation in a couple of minutes and you will never come back here. Begging is a way to failure. In you want to succeed, use facts and your achievements.

Secrets of a good answer

In order to answer this question properly, you need to some time to gather all facts and arguments and compile a full, explaining response.  There are several things that you need to analyze in advance:

  • Your personal goals and objectives as a member of this company
  • Whether you like company products
  • Whether you share company values and desires
  • Your possible movement up the career ladder
  • Company reputation

Including these points to your answer, you get a detailed and full explanation of your motives to join the company. In some particular cases, you should also add other details, for example, your experience and achievements in related spheres.

Some interviewers ask, ‘Why do you want to work for our company?‘ to determine if you have prepared for the conversation. Your assignment is to check information about the company and investigate whether your cooperation will satisfy both sides.

Your career mentor,


Christine Allen is young writer and blogger. She believes that you can get everything that you want. You just need to be sure in what you really want and be patient. You can follow her on Facebook, LinkedIn or Google+.

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