How to Answer “What Motivates You” Interview Question

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Interviewers love to ask “what motivates you” questions. Whether you’re applying for a job or requesting an internship, these are some of the most important questions to answer.

The trick is knowing how to answer this question in a way that shows off your skills and interests while also showing that you’re interested in working at the company. Here’s how I would approach this question if I were answering it today.

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Understand the question

Be sure to understand the question. What is the interviewer trying to find out? Why do they want to know, and how can you help them?

The interviewer wants to know if you’re motivated by money, power, or something else. They want to know if you’ll be an enthusiastic and hardworking employee who will put in the hours required to succeed at the position.

If you can answer these questions, your interviewer will be much more likely to hire you.

Identify your motivators

This is a question that can make you feel like your answer is absolutely obvious. But if you want to get hired, it’s important to think about what motivates you.

The interviewer wants to know how this job will help you achieve your goals and objectives, so they’ll be interested in hearing what drives your motivation. If the answer is, “I just want this job because of all the money,” then don’t expect any offers! You need something more intrinsic than just financial gain.

For example:

  • Do I have a personal interest in technology? If so, why? Do I have experience working with technology at home or in my community? Is there something specific I’m passionate about (e.g., design)? How does working with computers relate back to something else I care about (e.g., social justice issues)? You could also say, “I am drawn towards computers because…” and then go into detail about how it relates back to other things that you care about.
  • One last thing: I recommend that you write down your answer to this question before going into any interviews. It will help you stay focused and not say something stupid like, “I just want a job.”

Prepare Examples

When answering these questions, the best way to do so is through examples. You may have heard that you should always give an example of when and how you were motivated in order to demonstrate what motivates you. This is true! It’s important for interviewers to see that there are times when your motivation has been strong (and positive) and others where it hasn’t been so strong (or positive).

That being said, don’t just say, “I like doing things because I get paid.” Instead, tell them about an experience where this was true—whether it was a hobby or job—and then explain why it was so inspiring for you at that time or place in your life.

Practice your response

The first step to answering this question is to practice your answer with a friend or family member. You can also practice the answer in front of a mirror or even video yourself giving it. This will help you get used to how you look and sound when speaking, which will make it easier for interviewers on the other end of the line when they hear your voice again later on!

If you don’t have anyone handy who could help out with this, then I would recommend recording yourself as well so that later, when interviewing for jobs like these (or any job where there’s an interview), there won’t be any surprises once either party gets together again after being apart from each other for some time now.

Follow-Up After the Interview

You’re not done yet. You should follow up with a thank-you note, phone call, email, or LinkedIn connection.

Send a thank-you note within 24 hours of the interview. The aim of this note is to reiterate your interest in the job and thank the interviewer for their time.

The note can be short and sweet: “Dear John, thank you for taking the time to meet with me today.” I enjoyed our conversation and am excited about the possibility of working with your team. “If there is anything else I can provide or if you need additional information, please let me know.”

Even if you don’t get the job offer immediately after your interview, you can still use this as an opportunity to show how much you want the job and why it would be a great fit for both parties.

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We hope this guide has given you some insight into what motivates you and how to answer the “What Motivates You?” interview question.

While the answers may vary from person to person, there are some commonalities among all successful applicants. For example, it’s important that candidates understand their own motivations and give examples from past experience to demonstrate how these qualities will help them in their new role at work.

Your resume and LinkedIn profile are the first things your interviewer will see. Your resume should be clean and easy to read, with sections clearly labeled and no typos or grammatical mistakes. If you’re using a template, make sure it fits all of your experience under one category.

If you need help with your resume, we have a team of experts who can help you write a resume that gets results. We also offer professional resume critiques, so you can make sure your resume is as strong as possible before sending it out into the world.

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