“What are your weaknesses?” is the one question that interviewers absolutely love and which tends to trip up interviewees. Talking about one’s flaws is a perfectly normal thing because no one is perfect on planet.
Now, it is perfectly fine if you don’t like this question. After all, no one wants to talk about their shortcomings. You might think that talking about something that you are not good at all will sabotage your chances of getting the job. But, that’s not true. Interviewers want to see the ‘human-side’ of you. So control your ego and give them what they want.
The Greatest Weakness Should be the Real Weakness:
You need to give a well-thought out answer by presenting at least a couple of your ‘real’ weaknesses in such a way that interviewers think of you as a reflective, honest, and self-aware person. Here’s how you can do just that:
Firstly, you need to remember that what matters more is how you answer this question and not what specifically your weaknesses are. Having said that, it is recommended that you brainstorm some weaknesses of yours and cross-check them in advance of your interview with the necessary skills required for the job. Pick and choose those weaknesses that are not directly related with the job you have applied for. This will help you avoid any follow-up questions from the interviewers that can, in turn, trap you and give a negative impression.
In order to answer the question, “What are your weaknesses” effectively, it is in your interest to start off from the specific weaknesses and then elaborate by talking about the situation, task, action, and result.
This will demonstrate the measures you are taking to work on your weaknesses.
If you have chosen “Writing Skills” as your weakness after ensuring that you are not required to write in the position that you have applied (other than emails obviously) then you should talk about how your writing skills were needed in the past, how it caused you trouble, how you came to the conclusion that you need to work on it, the steps that you took to overcome your weakness and the progress you have made so far.
That is all. It wasn’t difficult, was it?
Never hide your Flaws:
Do not ever answer or even pretend that “I don’t have any weakness.” If you do, then you will rue it later on.
Also, instead of coming up with some imaginary weaknesses which you think you can somehow turn it into a strength at the end or highlighting personal issues as well as sentiments won’t serve you well.
Do not panic when you are asked: “What are your weaknesses”. Practice beforehand as to how you are going to answer this question based on the tips provided above. Think of this as your chance to show that you believe in the philosophy of ‘lifetime learning’ and how you are continuously trying to improve yourself.