Thinking Out Loud

How to Answer the Dreaded Interview Question…

By Keryn Nicolson

We’ve all been in an interview when the dreaded question “What is your biggest weakness?” is thrown out there. First of all, it’s such an annoying question. I mean, everyone has weaknesses and if you say “perfectionist” they’ll probably roll their eyes (at least in their minds).

If you find a way to answer this question strategically, it can have the interviewer focused on your strengths rather than your weaknesses which is the whole point of this question anyway. Try picking an actual weakness that you have noticed about yourself or that has been pointed out to you. Be careful of course to not focus on it too much as to present a red flag to the interviewer and spin the question around to share the steps you have taken to improve or the steps you plan on taking.

Be sure you really think hard about this response before your interview. The last thing you want is for this question to pop up and give an off the cusp response without offering resolutions. Also really make sure you read the job description thoroughly. If a big part of the job is cold calling clients, don’t say “I have a hard time trying to sell things over the phone sometimes”. You get the jist. If you list a weakness like, "I used to have a hard time staying organized with so many tasks at hand..." Try answering with something like: "Now I have found these 3 solutions that have really impacted the way I handle multiple tasks."

It's a common interview question, so if you prep beforehand and twist the question into your favor...it'll probably land in your favor!

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