How To Answer The Question 'What's Your Ideal Company?'
Ideally the answer (considering how many recruiters say "honesty" is important for them) really should be, YOUR COMPANY.
But that straight forward, forthright answer may not be what the interviewer is looking for.
So what is he/she looking for?
The whole idea of an interview is that the the company thinks you are the best for the position.
Think of yourself as a doctor, a healer if you will.
The company is in pain and hence it has advertised for a position.They need someone who can come in, take charge of things and take care of them, they need someone to reduce that pain.You are the doctor they are seeking out.
The interviewer is there to select you and not to reject you.
Why Ask The Question 'What's Your Ideal Company?'
So why do companies ask this question in an interview.
For starters its another way to find out how much you know about the company you are applying to and for that matter the industry you want to work in.
It is also a question to understand your fit into the organization. Some people crave challenges, new opportunities, entrepreneurial environs whereas others might want to work with a growing, but stable company.
Your answer gives the interviewer an insight into what your requirements or expectations are from a company and whether his particular company will be able to fulfill that.
So How Should You Anwser The Question 'What's Your Ideal Company?'
Do your research. I keep mentioning this in all my interview related notes. Read the company statements, check out the website, find out what is happening, are there any new products, services, technologies that are being talked about.
Is there a new thrust into an area you are interested in, geographic or business vertical?
This is your career and you are going to work for a minimum 2-3 years with this company. You are expected to know what and why you would want to do that. The answer to that why, is the answer to this question.
Your answer, your ideal company should not mention the company you are applying to by name, but by describing it, you must be able to rest all doubts about who you are talking. You praise your future employer in a way that lets them know you admire them and that you are aware of the latest developments at the company.
The level of detail you would want in the answer would be dependent on the position you are seeking. simple thumb rule : the higher the position, the lesser the detail.
My Ideal company would be an MNC with a track record for corporate governance and one that is looking to launch telecommunication services in emerging economies.
I completed my degree with xyz specialization, to be able to learn and contribute to a company in the abc industry. As this is the start of my career, I want to work with a company that is a market leader, invests in training and has a strong career management program, thereby rewarding loyalty.
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How To Fake It?
A lot of readers are writing in saying, these interview tips are great, but what if I just need the job and do not necessarily love the company I am applying to. I just want work, then what? How do I come up with all these answers?
Well, at least you are honest with yourself. I suggest you genuinely find something you like about the company you are applying to and use that as an answer to this question.
There is always something you can like. If you cannot find it in the public domain, then, talk to employees who work there. So say something like 'One of your employees told me how important it is for your management that everyone participates in some community building cause. I think that is wonderful'
It may not be the best reason, but it is one!