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‘What’s Your Biggest Weakness?’ How to answer this common interview question

It is one of the most common interview questions, but everyone hates being asked, “What’s your biggest weakness?” during an interview. Showing your potential during an interview is hard enough. So how are you supposed to express yourself to employers when they want you to tell them what’s your weakness?


Thankfully, responding to this question is not as hard as you might think. Instead, you can actually utilize it to convey your potential if you respond strategically.


How to answer “What’s Your Biggest Weakness?” during an interview

Don’t lie or come up with an answer you think might impress the interviewer (like “being a perfectionist” or “working too hard”). Instead, focus on a skill you’re trying to advance.


For example, let’s say you’re interviewing for a teaching coordinator role at your favorite company. You love preparing teaching materials and teaching others, however, you get very anxious and nervous when delivering your presentations because public speaking isn’t your strong suit.


Instead of just trying to sweep this question under the rug, address it, in the meantime ease the interviewer’s concerns by sharing what you’re doing to overcome this challenge.


Here’s an example answer:


“I have to admit that public speaking has always been difficult for me because I’m an introvert. It makes me nervous to get up in front of people and talk. However, I’ve learned that this was an integral part of training others, which I love doing. So, I’ve been working hard to improve my public speaking skills by participating in monthly Toastmasters meetings as well as taking on volunteer training sessions for colleagues so I can get some extra practice. Since challenging myself to do this, I’ve noticed a big difference in my confidence level and have felt more capable than ever in my role as a trainer.”


Essentially, you want to convey that you understand you’re weak in one area, but to make up for it, you’ve been working hard to improve that area because you know it’s important in your role.


There’s no need to give a long explanation for this question. Keep it simple and straightforward, and focus on the positives rather than dwell on the negatives.


If you’ve got an interview coming up, be sure to check out our How to face a job interview article.


Don’t get stumped by common interview questions like this one. Instead, go in prepared. The first step is to be honest with yourself and tailor your answers so you can market your skills rather than detract from your potential.