What are your Weaknesses?

Thursday, April 17, 2014

Q. I have an interview next week and what always stumps me is the question about listing my weaknesses. How do I do this and still show myself in a positive light? - Rebecca

A. The reason an interviewer asks the ‘weaknesses’ question is to give some insight into your levels of self-awareness. An answer to avoid is ‘I have no weaknesses.’ This will just make you come across as arrogant and closed to learning. There are two approaches to answering the weaknesses question. First, take a strength and exaggerate it, because too much of any strength is a weakness. For example, ‘sometimes I can get stressed because I get so caught up in a task and perhaps I could handle the stress better.’ Taking this approach your are still placing focus on a strength, that is your sense of dedication to a task.

 

Second, speak about a weakness you had in the past that you have worked on. For example, ‘in the past I suffered from shyness, but I’ve been working on my confidence levels by putting myself forward in situations.’ Showing how you have taken action to overcome a perceived weakness will not only demonstrate self-awareness, but proactivity as well.