Job Interview Question & Answer: What Motivates You To Do Your Best on the Job?

Open-Ended Questions

Though interviewers often ask questions with specific, acceptable responses in mind, many interview questions remain open-ended, such as “What motivates you to do your best on the job?” Such questions provide employers insight regarding the personalities of job seekers. However, no perfect answer exists, and interviewees should maintain an awareness of what different answers may communicate about disposition. Some responses may negatively affect the opinions of hiring managers and imply undesirable work ethics.

How To Answer

Pre-Interview Self-Assessment
In order to answer, “What motivates you to do your best on the job?” hopefuls must sincerely consider what positively impacts work performance before interviews. Some common and favorable areas of motivation include achievement, interaction, creativity, leadership, service, and problem solving. Once job candidates determine which stimulations provide the most encouragement in work settings, the individuals should consider how motivations inform personality traits and job performance. For example: interviewees driven by interaction feel most engaged and perform best when dealing with other people. Hiring personnel may glean such candidates require sociable and open relationships with managers, frequent face-to-face conversations, and may prove friendly and energetic. Such knowledge helps employers assess how well individuals fill available roles.

Many professional motivations come across as selfish and unfavorable. For example: though job hopefuls may feel especially inspired by salary, such a response deters employers from considering individuals for hire. Candidates should let company and position demands inform answers. Use answers to further prove how interviewees remain the ideal fit for desired jobs.

During the Interview
Job seekers should relate responses back to abilities, skills, and knowledge benefiting hiring managers. The best way to answer, “What motivates you to do your best on the job?” includes providing employers with practical examples. Candidates should elaborate how motivators worked in the past by giving short, detailed stories from previous jobs. If possible, comment on how the motivation helped advise action and how past employers profited from said actions.

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