When you’re in an interview and you’re asked, “What is your biggest weakness?” the hiring manager is looking for a few things. They want to ensure that you can be honest and that you can acknowledge your weakness, and/or have a solution in place to address that specific weakness. Of course, it is a tough question to answer because you want to be transparent, but you also don’t want to say the wrong thing. So we’re sharing how to tackle this interview question, below.
Knowing that this question may be asked during an interview – being prepared is key. Start by thinking of a few ways in which you can answer this question – beforehand. Are you lacking skills? Organization? Time management? Self-confidence? Then brainstorm a way to explain it. If one of these topics comes to mind prior to the interview, take initiative to create a plan to work on improving it. In doing so, you have shown already that you are self-aware and proactive. Which brings us into our next point.
Address Your Weaknesses
Although this interview question can be intimidating, the typical answer to this type of question is to discuss a learning experience. The interviewer is hoping to learn of an area that you have struggled with, and how you plan to resolve it. For example, “I’m an extremely forgetful person, and to help with this, I have a weekly calendar and daily checklist I follow to keep me on top of things.” Showing that you’ve overcome the weakness and have found a way to problem-solve will show the interviewer you are proactive and continuing to better yourself as an employee.
If you feel as though you already have addressed any weaknesses you’re aware of and are unsure of what other topics to touch upon, you can share a skill that you may be lacking that the job description includes. For example, “While I really don’t have much experience in QuickBooks, I’ve worked with similar software, and can adapt quickly to new responsibilities.” The hiring manager will first appreciate your honesty, and potentially to allow you to improve this skill. However, if this is a skill that is a necessity for the position – you both know that you may not be the best fit for the job. Regardless, answering this question directly – is key.
Bonus: Here is a list of ten different possible weaknesses that you may relate to – and how to answer each one specifically. Check it out!