What Is Your Greatest Weakness? Turn Your Weakness Into An Advantage!
Even though it might be a cliché question in the interview room, employers still ask ‘what is your greatest weakness?’ as it not only shows your level of critical thinking and demands a creative answer, it also asks you directly to tell them something that might possibly hurt your chances and make you look more human than the person on your CV. Everybody wants to give the best impression of themselves. So how do you answer this question truthfully but without hampering your application?
Instead of blurting out something you probably shouldn’t say, there are a few ways you can go about answering a difficult question like this. One first tact is to pick out a weakness about yourself that may be a weakness in every-day life, but becomes a strength in the workplace. If you find people tell you that you are over-organised – that everything you do has to be planned out and every part of your day always has to be structured down to the minute – then you could say your greatest weakness is organisation to a fault. That way, you’ve answered the question truthfully but in a way that doesn’t hinder your chances in getting the job, but might even enhance them.
Equally, if you feel you like things just-so, you like everything to be in order and no one to interfere with your personal system for anything, then you may choose to answer that you are a perfectionist. You are someone who will reliably deliver your employer results every time, simply because you yourself will not be happy with any work you do being anything other than pure excellence. Or, if you are headed for a managerial role, saying you are strong-willed and over all else determined may work to your advantage.
Or, if you don’t want to go down this path, you can answer with brutal honesty. This will show any prospective employer you have guts and are a straight-talking person, so long as what you say doesn’t reveal anything about yourself that would make you seem unprofessional or any less qualified for the job. Employers tend not to want people who boast about their crazy nights out and virulent love life; they don’t expect you to be perfect, but they do expect you to turn up and do the job well every day without your personal life interfering. Also, whilst answering this question with an honest answer may show a strength, you don’t want to be too candid, otherwise you run the risk of coming across as callous, arrogant or overly-confident.
So, if you are faced with this question, honesty is the best policy always; be truthful with your answer, but not truthful in any way that would make you look any less of the perfect candidate. It may seem a more difficult question to answer than many others – and it is designed to be just that – but if not simply conceding a weakness that will not affect your work life in any meaningful way, try to consider a weakness you feel within yourself that you can use to become a strength in the workplace, so that you can answer one of the most difficult interview questions in a positive way and turn your greatest weakness into your greatest advantage.