Two Simple Steps to Answering “Tell me your biggest weakness”
Clint Mytych

Clint Mytych

Certified Professional Résumé Writer and blogger. Founder of Content Pro.

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No one likes admitting weaknesses.  But that doesn’t mean you have to go into an interview unprepared, especially when you’re bound to hear the interviewer say, “Tell me your biggest weakness.”

Use these two tips shared with us by a hiring manager:

Avoid clichés.

Answering with something along the lines of “I work too hard” is guaranteed to make your interviewer’s eyes roll.  This answer displays a total lack of self-awareness and, frankly, doesn’t even sound honest.

The best way to avoid clichés is to be prepared so you’re not speaking off the cuff.  You MUST give some thought to this question well before arriving to the interview.  In a best-case scenario, your answer will be prepared even before the phone screening.  

Be honest, then qualify your statement.

Think of a genuine weakness—preferably one about which you can truthfully say you’re improving.  

How about a real-life example:

A hiring manager recently shared a response that really impressed him.  A candidate was interviewing for a position in management and responded with: “I have trouble delegating.  It’s not a trust issue—I trust anyone 100% until they give me a reason not to.  The ugly side to perfectionism is the way it fosters a need to control things that aren’t my responsibility.  It’s something I consciously work on, and I made great progress delegating more and more tasks while in my previous role.”  

This response is humble, self-aware, well-prepared and honest.  The candidate then goes the extra mile by communicating that he’s actively working to improve this weakness.

Even if you’re not actively searching for a new position at the moment, it benefits you to have an answer prepared!

So, what’s your biggest weakness?

Content Pro Resume Services LLC is a career development company providing tailored résumés, cover letters, LinkedIn® profiles, curriculum vitae, federal résumés, career coaching and other resources to help people succeed on their career journey.  No matter your experience or industry, we can help!  We serve clients at all levels: recent graduates, entry-level, professionals, seasoned executives, and those looking to change fields. 

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