Today, I would like to write about one of the most common interview questions i.e., What is your weakness. At some point during the interview process, you may be asked to describe your weaknesses. Many of us are unsure how to approach this question. So let’s get started and see how to answer what is your greatest weakness.
You may be asked about your strengths and weaknesses in one question What are your strengths and weaknesses or you may be asked about them in two separate questions. Earlier we have explained clearly on What are your Strengths. In this post, we will learn What is your greatest weakness.
Interviewers may ask you this question in different ways.
1. What is your weakness?
2. What is your biggest weakness?
3. What is your greatest weakness?
4. What are some of your weaknesses?
5. What are your weakest areas?
6. What are your weakest skills?
7. What part of the job will be most challenging for you?
8. What would your current boss say is your weakest area?
9. Did you let your team down any time?
10. What kind of tasks or duties would you struggle with the most?
11. Which of your current tasks or duties do you find most challenging?
12. What would your colleagues or employer describe as your biggest weakness?
Check below video to see “What are your Weaknesses with Sample Answers”
Firstly remember, Don’t ever tell that you don’t have any weaknesses. Mention at least one weakness which you had and mention how you did overcome it.
No one is perfect, so there is no reason to worry about accepting your weaknesses. Everyone has weaknesses but who wants to admit to them, especially in a job interview.
Accepting your weakness gives an indication of how open you are in taking some constructive criticism.
Mentioning your weaknesses can be one of the most difficult parts of the job interview. It is important to respond carefully when you are asked about your weakness.
The reason behind asking this questions:
The main reason for asking this question is to understand how aware you are about your weakness and how you have been trying towards improving yourself.
How to choose a Good Weakness?
1. Choose a weakness that is acceptable for the job at hand – You can mention skills that are not critical for the job. Don’t mention a weakness which is related to the job you applied for. If you are applying for a Software developer job, don’t tell that you hate coding.
2. Choose a weakness that is minor and fixable – A weakness which you can improve easily with basic motivation. Your weakness needs to be something that you could feasibly improve through personal effort. If you are applying for a Frontend developer job, you can say “I am not familiar with backend development. Instead, I focus mainly on new tools related to front-end development because I’m interested in front-end development a lot.”
3. Choose skills you have improved – Assume, you are applying for a Software Developer job and this position doesn’t require an interaction with clients. You can say – One skill set I improved in the past was conducting group presentations. As a Software developer, I always write code and my interactions will be one-on-one. I felt it might benefit me to improve my presentation skills. So I took a course on Soft Skills and improved my presentation skills. It helped me a lot in the presentation of a product to the clients.
To help get you started, here are some example answers.
Remember, interviewers, care more about how you answer and less about what you answer.
Segregate your answer into three parts:
1. Mention the genuine weakness but choose something that is not damaging to the job you have applied for.
2. Mention your awareness of your weakness – An ideal candidate won’t deny that they have a real weakness. It shows Self-awareness.
3. Tell about the steps you have taken to overcome your weakness – An ideal candidate presents the steps they are taking to correct a weakness.
Example 1: Public Speaking
I’m naturally shy. I have trouble speaking in groups even though I have good ideas. I realized that public speaking is the area I could work on. I feel nervous when asked to present to a large group of people. I never faced this issue when I’m interacting with small groups. I have joined in networking groups who want to improve public speaking. Last month I gave a presentation before a large group of people in our company. I started to feel more comfortable now. I got a great feedback from my boss and colleagues.
In the above example, the candidate is admitting that they have a weakness which is very common. Fear of public speaking is a common weakness. The candidate clearly mentioned that they have no trouble in speaking before small groups and also specified that the weakness is identified and rectified.
Example 2: Delegation
I don’t feel comfortable delegation work. I think one area I could work on is my delegation skills. I spend more time than necessary by taking tasks personally that could easily be delegated to someone else. I have never missed a deadline but I realized that I can slow things down if I take all the tasks personally without delegated to others. This I realized recently when given the opportunity to manage a group of people in my project. I took a management skills training course and that was a huge educational experience in many ways. I learned a lot on delegating tasks. I got a good feedback from my manager and colleagues.
In the above example, the candidate is admitting that they have a weakness which is common to many people. The candidate mentioned that they have no trouble in completing the task personally and also mentioned that the weakness is identified and rectified.
These are just sample answers for the question what are your weaknesses. You need to personalize these sample answers according to your personal weakness and the ways that you are adapting and improving yourself.
Some of the examples of weaknesses are as follows:
- Speech anxiety (fear of public speaking)
- Lack of focus or Too much focused
- Time management
- Over talking
- Verbal skills or Writing skills
- Delegation (Sharing responsibilities)
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Must Read: 6 Most Important Interview Questions