“What is your greatest weakness?” Revealing your greatest weakness negatively affects your chances of getting hired. Telling the interviewer that you have none is unbelievable. So what to do?
Here’s how most applicants answer this:
Clothing a strength as a weakness.
My greatest weakness is that I’m a workaholic. Instead of celebrating holidays, you could usually find me sitting in my desk doing the next day’s task. As a result, I barely have time for my friends and families.”
I’m a perfectionist. As a result, I barely make my work on time because it’s hard to satisfy my standards.
The purpose of these answers is to trick your interviewer to believe that the weaknesses aren’t bad at all. After all, who doesn’t prefer a workaholic employee over a lazy one? A perfectionist? No problem.
For a call center beginner, this technique might seem clever. And mind you, lots of applicants has been using this for years. But, this technique is getting old! Not only that it’s old but also sound pretentious.
Any reasonable interviewer will think:
“Really? I can hardly get my ass off from bed to work every morning and here you are, talking about how your workaholic and perfectionist you are?”
The Best Way to Answer: What is Your Greatest Weakness?
Be honest. There’s no other way around it.
You might think, “if I’m going to be honest, then I’d fail the interview!”
False. Surely we all have weaknesses. What matters is this: your sense of responsibility by acknowledging that your weakness exists and that you’re doing something to deal with it.
That said, answer the question honestly, but do not deliver a news that’s too discouraging for the interviewer to hire you. As what they say:
It’s not what you say, but how you say it.
1.) Pick a weakness that you truly are struggling with.
When picking a weakness, pick the one that is not too terrible. You don’t want to give them a good reason not to hire you.
Ever punched someone on the face because of your short temper? Nope, you don’t want to say that. You know what I mean. Don’t pick the weaknesses that are too terrible they won’t want to hire you.
For example, my weakness is this: I get conscious when meeting new people face to face. This is an okay weakness because you’re applying in a call center, where transactions are mostly handled via telephone. You don’t need to meet new people face to face. Therefore, this won’t affect the interviewer’s decision to hire me.
2.) Explain what you’re doing to deal with your weakness.
After delivering a slightly bad news, you have to cool that fire. This time, deliver the good news.
So what’s the good news? That would be the things you do to deal with that weakness. When you let the interview know that you’re taking actions to rise above your weakness, it shows that you take responsibilities and you’re willing to do the uncomfortable in order to improve. Remember, we all have weaknesses. What matters is how we acknowledge that it exists and how we deal with it.
3.) Tell a story where you successfully handled it.
There’s a big difference between saying something and proving something. With this interview question, don’t just say you’ve overcome your weakness.
You have to prove it by giving examples or better yet, telling a story. Everybody, including your interviewer, loves a story. This also makes your claim more credible. It shows that you’re holding yourself accountable on your improvement which makes you a good candidate for the position.
My weakness is that I’m a bit conscious when meeting new people. I am more of an introvert so if I were to choose between going to parties and staying at home with my books, I’d always choose my books.
Actions you’ve taken to deal with it:
But I know that staying at home all the time and avoiding meeting new people isn’t healthy, and the more I do it, the more reserved I become, so I make it a point to accept party invitations from my circle of friends and meet new faces. Sometimes, I even talk to strangers in the street just to practice my social skills.
A story where you handled your weakness well:
At first, it was really challenging but the more I do it, the better I become at dealing with it. In fact, I’ve met some of my closest friends because I made the effort to become more social. I still find it challenging from time to time, and I think it’s going to be a part of me, but I always strive to get better at it.
My last tip for you today is to figure out what specific weakness you’re going to reveal to the interviewer then prepare for it. I’ve been to so many call center interviews and this question gets asked every single time.
The interviewer doesn’t want to hear that you have no weakness because that is just impossible. What she wants to hear from your answer is that you’re aware of your weakness, and that you’re doing something to overcome it. That’s the kind of applicant they wanna hire.
Hope this helps with your interview. Goodluck! 🙂
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