…. I am sure you have already been asked this question several times, whether it was during an interview, or over an informal conversation with friends. And I would be interested to know what you came up with as an answer.
To be honest, I hate to be asked this question.
You force yourself to answer something strategic like, “I see myself in your position in 5 years, managing a small Business Intelligence team” or “As a consultant, I would like to deepen my knowledge in the Energy sector to be able to move to this industry”…
….while what you really think is “In 5 yrs. I see myself kite surfing in the North East of Brazil” or “There’s no way I’ll be working for anyone in 5yrs ‘cause I’ll be my own boss”. And the truth may be that you have no f** idea where you may be in 5 years. And that’s OK.
What I really believe is that in 5 years, I will be wherever life will take me.
Do you remember when you career advisor asked you to do a “career plan” and write down exactly what you wanted to do in your professional life, and how you were gonna get there? HR still do this exercise sometimes in corporate training…. But come on! Do you really believe in this? Do you really think that you can determine your path 5 years in advance? And that things will turn out as you planned?
Where is room for the Unexpected? And for Creativity? For Life?! What if you meet someone who loves the countryside and wants to settle there to start his own company? What if you had the opportunity to work for an ONG in Africa? And what if…?
Don’t lock yourself in some predetermined plan just to please others. Don’t be afraid of the unknown! Life is full of surprises…so be ready to live a real adventure!