Your weaknesses and strengths – consider how might the pros counter?

By: Dean Lawton

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Interview research must be an basic part of your work and job hunting strategy. A good number job seekers will consume an exhaustive sum of time to arrange straightforward replies for queries about work experience and problem solving or profit making know-how. Now with all of that immense grounding you’ve sealed an interview opportunity and you are sitting in front of a corporate recruiter or on the cell phone with a hiring manager. Don’t you just hate that moment in a employment interview when you’re asked to divulge your strengths and weaknesses?

As if you are going to respond candidly. “My strengths include being a really good party animal and weaknesses include not having enough time to live up to my vices.”

However, when interviewing with professionals such as recruitment consultant or a human resources professional using humor is unlikely to get you anywhere but onto the reject pile. So how would the pros tackle this?

Asking a candidate about their strengths and weaknesses is an important way to test his or her suitability for a particular role. The recruiter is trying to see if the person has a sense of his or her own limitations. They also want to know what you are good at and how you might fit into the role you are trying to fill. The interviewer wants to make sure that you have the right ‘behaviors’ and skills for the job.

It is enormously essential to give unambiguous illustrations to display your “strengths”. This is known as “behavioral interviewing”, this is where you are asked: “Tell me about a time when you ….” So make sure you have specific examples to back up everything you rehearse for your interview.

An case in point might sound something like, “My background includes over 14 years experience in serving organizations to add value to their financial systems, customer service department, sales/marketing clients, and Internet development projects.”. An extra case in point might sound like, “I enjoy working in environments where I can directly administer the development of a project or lead the systems activities of others”. Or something like, “People who know me describe me as a quick and proficient learner with the capacity to complete campaigns on time and ahead of schedule”. Make sure your examples are truthful and can be verified by your references.

Okay, now for your “weaknesses”. “Start the sentence with, ‘my area for improvement is’,”. Also, nominate a skill you don’t actually need on the job like word processing. Being able to say you are actively trying to change your weakness into strength is also a good idea.

For example, “My area for improvement is public speaking and I have just enrolled in a communication course at a nearby college.” Or you might say something like, “I may stay a little later at work to study any resource that will help me to become a subject matter authority “. Or perhaps you can say, “Thinking out of the box is now and then a little risky but I have been able to regularly take advantage of an innovative solution”.

CareerConnected.com’s Career Café provides an extensive library of articles on interview preparation and job hunting tools. Best wishes on your job hunt.

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