Workplace Interview Question- "What are your weaknesses?"

Sep 24, 2006
6,173
4
New York, NY
Now although we all feel that when it comes to applying for a job we dont have any weaknesses.. BUT you just cant say that to someone who is interviewing you...

I wonder what would be a good way to answer this question without kicking yourself at the same time??

If anyone has any experiences, please share, thanks!
 

KarraAnn

Mrs. KarraAnn!
Feb 10, 2009
1,027
0
Make it a positive weakness..if that makes sense. I can't think of a good example right now, but I'm working on one for you!
 

KarraAnn

Mrs. KarraAnn!
Feb 10, 2009
1,027
0
Ok, you could say, 'I am a workaholic, and although it is good for my employer, sometimes it gets in the way of my personal life.'

Maybe not the best one but just to get the idea...?
 
Sep 24, 2006
6,173
4
New York, NY
^^yeah, I heard somewhere else that people sometimes say that their weakness is that they let the work consume them to the point where they cant focus on anything else until the job or task is done... interviewers like that, I guess

Thanks for your suggestion!
 

katrines

O.G.
Aug 21, 2006
220
0
I am a second-year law student, so this fall I did about 35 screening interviews and a bunch of callbacks. So I have this interview answer down pat! In my experience, they're asking that question not so much to figure out what your weaknesses are, but to find out how you'll react to the question. Even though it's SUCH a standard question, it really throws a lot of people off!

I always responded with a legitimate weakness, as I think interviewers are sick of hearing the cop-out answer that "I'm just TOO devoted to my work!!" But, I always made sure to spin my answer into a positive. So, I would say something like: "A weakness of mine is that I procrastinate, but in the last few years I've tried to break projects into smaller parts and give them all deadlines in order to make things more manageable. Now I love the feeling of accomplishment I get when I check a part of the project off my to-do list, and I find that I now get things done before the deadline!"

The key is just making sure you are telling the truth about your weaknesses (we all have them!), but also adding on what you've done to correct the problem and turn it around.

Good luck!
 

titania029

O.G.
Nov 7, 2006
3,551
212
Dallas
katrines' answer is a good one. Give an honest weakness, and then describe the steps that you have taken to try to overcome it. Your answer will show the employer what you will do when you encounter difficulties on the job.
 

redney

Lovin' Life!
O.G.
Apr 21, 2006
13,766
3,466
:yes: Be honest with a genuine developmental area you need to work on, or a skill you already have but want to deepen. The ole "I am TOO dedicated to my work" is sooooo trite and every interviewer worth his or her salt will immediately roll their eyes. :rolleyes:

Examples:

* public speaking
* deepening your existing skills as a supervisor/"coach" to others
* time management
* tend to be detail-oriented but need to always remember to step back to see the big picture
* embracing the 80/20 rule (80/20=focus 80 percent of your time and energy on the 20 percent of your work that is really important. Don't just "work smart", work smart on the right things)

Here's a link to other hints and examples. Google more if you wish:

http://askamanager.blogspot.com/2007/08/how-to-answer-what-are-your-weaknesses.html
 
Sep 24, 2006
6,173
4
New York, NY
:yes: Be honest with a genuine developmental area you need to work on, or a skill you already have but want to deepen. The ole "I am TOO dedicated to my work" is sooooo trite and every interviewer worth his or her salt will immediately roll their eyes. :rolleyes:

Examples:

* public speaking
* deepening your existing skills as a supervisor/"coach" to others
* time management
* tend to be detail-oriented but need to always remember to step back to see the big picture
* embracing the 80/20 rule (80/20=focus 80 percent of your time and energy on the 20 percent of your work that is really important. Don't just "work smart", work smart on the right things)

Here's a link to other hints and examples. Google more if you wish:

http://askamanager.blogspot.com/2007/08/how-to-answer-what-are-your-weaknesses.html
wow, thanks Redney!! I agree on the "im too dedicated to my job" thing..
 

redney

Lovin' Life!
O.G.
Apr 21, 2006
13,766
3,466
This is a good one!

While I almost always agree with everything redney says, I would not use "time management" as a response. I interview prospectives for several positions each year and this is a big giant red flag for me.
uh-oh, ahertz, I didn't hit a 1000% with ya this time. :Push: I was thinking about it in the context for someone who is at the point in their career where they are just beginning to be in positions where they need to delegate to others but tend to "hold on" to some of their work, not trusting others to do it or trying to be Superman/woman and trying to "do it all." I defintely wasn't clear (c'mon yall aren't mind readers? LOL :P)

Learning to let go and trust others and delegate is a big developmental step for some people in some types of jobs so maybe that could be it if applicable to the job.

Just my $.02