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How to Answer: What Is Your Greatest Weakness?

How good are you with self-analysis?

Work And career
| Contributor Content| UPDATED: December 6, 2017, 3:57 PM IST
How to Answer: What Is Your Greatest Weakness? Representative Image: Getty Images
Job interviews can get tricky with questions like ‘What are your weaknesses?’ This question is part of 90% HR interviews and while you may think that it is a vague question, it is not. Your interviewer is trying to test you for a few skills with this one question.

First, how much you care about self-awareness and self-analysis.

Secondly, if you know your weaknesses, how good are you with self-improvement.
Thirdly, even your interviewer knows that it’s a tricky question and he wants to assess you how you perform under such pressure and emerge as a winner.

So, how can you appropriately answer this question. Well, according to experts, the answer must be true and should depict your real weaknesses. The point is that you must not try to forge your answer and give silly replies.
Also, be wary of interlinking your personal strengths with your weaknesses. You’ll just weave a web and it will be difficult to come out of that. Mind you, answers like ‘I’m a perfectionist’ or ‘workaholic’ or ‘I stick to companies for longer’ are not weaknesses.

Ask yourself, if there’s any skill that you are not too good at currently, or the reason for a deadline you did not meet, or something your supervisor points out every now and then or may be cited in your last performance appraisal.
Then find out how you are overcoming it.

Prepare for this question in advance, as this question will be asked to you in most of your interviews. Start with penning down your real weaknesses and then diplomatically take out the ones that can do the least harm to your interview and job prospect yet present the answer in the most honest way.

Also, never say ‘you do not have any weaknesses!’ It just backfires and shocks your job interviewer.
Some interviewers might disguise this question in the following ways, “What according to your current boss is your weakest area?”, “Cite an instance when you failed terribly at work”, “Tell me about a challenging situation at work and how did you overcome it?”
First Published: December 6, 2017, 3:57 PM IST
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