Employers "will make bold bets on people who have an unwavering passion for success", says Mr Bill McDermott, co-chief executive of software firm SAP. In an interview with The New York Times, he shares his views on the importance of knowing what one wants, in order to ace that job interview.
You were the assistant coach to your dad, who trained your brother's basketball team. Did you help with strategy?
Every timeout, my dad would ask for my opinion. And I was always quick to give him one. Sometimes, I had a different play in mind than he had, and he was quick to listen and try it. Sometimes he wouldn't take it but, very often, the debate led to an even-better answer.
What did you do after college?
I believed strongly that I had to work at a company that provides great training, that would give me the professional polish I needed. I wanted to work for Xerox. On the day of my interviews, I told my father: "I guarantee you, I'm coming home tonight with my employee badge from Xerox in my pocket."
So I made it through all the interviews to meet Xerox's district manager. We had this extraordinarily good interview, and he said: "I really enjoyed this conversation, and the HR department will be in touch with you in the next couple of weeks."