Interview Question: What Do You Look For in a Company?

By Indeed Editorial Team

Published January 3, 2022

The Indeed Editorial Team comprises a diverse and talented team of writers, researchers and subject matter experts equipped with Indeed's data and insights to deliver useful tips to help guide your career journey.

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During an interview, an employer may ask questions that give them an idea of your priorities. One question that can give them this insight is "What do you look for in a company?" Your answer is a great opportunity to demonstrate why you're a good fit for the company. In this article, we discuss how to answer the interview question "What do you look for in a company?" and provide sample responses.

Why employers ask "What do you look for in a company?"

Employers often ask this question so they can understand your goals and priorities and determine if they match with the company's. Your answer may also show how enthusiastic you are. For example, if you're applying for a position with many opportunities for advancement, you may say you're looking for a place where you can develop your career. The employer may then consider you an ideal candidate.

Related: Top 20 Interview Questions (With Sample Answers)

How to answer "What do you look for in a company?"

Here are five steps to consider when respond to this question in an interview:

1. Connect your answer to the specific position

A good way to show that you understand the job is to incorporate its duties into your answer. Explain how the company or job you're interviewing for matches your priorities. For example, you might mention being excited about the position's leadership opportunities because you've been developing these skills and want to continue growing in this area.

2. Focus on your skills

In your answer, try to highlight your skills and why they make you the best person for the position. Although it's important to know what the position can do for you, it's beneficial to show an interviewer how you can bring value to the company.

Related: How to Answer "Tell Me About Yourself" (Tips and Example Answers)

3. Talk about long-term goals

While an interviewer may ask questions about your long-term goals specifically, like asking about your five-year plan, answering "What do you look for in a company?" is another opportunity to bring up the topic. Employers usually have a long-term vision for their company, which may include a vision for the position you're trying to get. Tell the interviewer the long-term goals you'd like to meet in a company so they can see how your goals match up.

4. Stay positive

It's vital to have an upbeat approach to your answer because it shows the interviewer that you're confident about your ability to handle the job. When preparing your answer, always strive for positivity. Even if you're discussing an aspect of a past job that didn't work for you, ensure your answer includes an optimistic statement. For example, if you know you don't like open-ended tasks or flexible deadlines, you might tell the interviewer that you're interested in the job because it seems to involve structure and measurable goals.

5. Be sincere

Don't feel pressured to pretend you're looking for something you're not simply because you know it's an answer the employer might like. This may lead to you taking a job that isn't a good fit for you or losing a chance for a job that would have been a good fit because the interviewer senses you're not being genuine. Being sincere when answering this question is beneficial for both you and the employer.

Related: 21 Job Interview Tips: How To Make a Great Impression

Example answers for "What do you look for in a company?"

Here are a few sample answers that may help you prepare your own response during the interview:

Example 1

"I'd love to have a position that challenges me and has opportunities for improving my skills. I've focused on improving my technological skills and staying updated on developments in technology, and I'd like to continue that. Part of why I'm interested in this position is because I know this company values innovation and technological advancement. I also want to take on more responsibilities at work in the future, so professional development in general is important to me."

Example 2

"In my previous job, I valued the emphasis the company put on teamwork. Collaborating with coworkers motivates me to do my best work, and I'm able to think more creatively when I can brainstorm with others. I also appreciate opportunities to learn from coworkers, which is why I'm interested in the mentor program the company has for new employees. I could really thrive under a mentor, and I would enjoy mentoring new employees myself in the future."

Related: 10 Questions To Ask After an Interview

Example 3

"Work-life balance is very important to me, so I'm interested in a company that also makes it a priority. I've read about how this company believes in flexible schedules, offers generous PTO and encourages employees to challenge themselves without risking burn out. That kind of environment would give me the support to become the best employee possible."

Example 4

"I'd love to work for a company that openly values its employees and celebrates their achievements. In one of my previous positions, management encouraged us to support and praise each other, which led to a positive and motivating environment. While researching this company, I found your monthly newsletter and notices it includes an employee spotlight. I liked how it celebrated the employee's contributions to the company while including details about who they are as a person."

Example 5

"I find it fulfilling to work directly with clients and customers, though I haven't had as much experience in that area as I want. I'm interested in this position because it has more opportunities for those interactions. It's also important to me to work for a company that values its commitment to its clients and customers.

The last office I worked in had a policy of trying to help anyone who called, even if they'd called the wrong department. If we had the answer or could transfer them to the right person, that's what we did. It may seem small, but every time I've been able to take a call from a worried client and hang up knowing they were satisfied, I felt like I'd done meaningful work."

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