How to Share Your Strengths and Weaknesses During A Job Interview

You are sitting in front of a hiring manager, or worse, a group of people interviewing you for a role, and the dreaded question arises …

“What are your weaknesses?”

You spend what seems like an eternity struggling inside your own head: “Do I tell them that I get late from time to time or that I take things too personally?” before deciding on an answer that makes you moan, “I care too much and work too hard.”

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While this question isn’t likely to be off the interview checklist anytime soon, you know it’s likely to come and may take some time to reflect on before the next interview, so you can answer it with truth and respect. Her sister-in-law question, “What are your strengths,” also arrives, so it’s best to be prepared in advance.

What are your strengths / weaknesses?

Strengths are a set of skills or character traits that you possess that help you perform your tasks in a productive and efficient manner and make you an excellent candidate for a job. Weaknesses are characteristics or shortcomings that, when left unchecked, can hinder your ability to do your job well.

It can be difficult to touch your own horn during an interview. Even more difficult is to find a balance between being honest about some of your shortcomings, without diverting the hiring manager to the idea of ​​hiring you.

Take a moment before each interview (and ideally before submitting the application) to determine your strengths and weaknesses. This is best done at first as a personal reflection, but at some point you may want to have the help of people close to you. This could be asking for feedback from friends, family, or someone you’ve worked with in the past.

You can create a list of your strengths and weaknesses and, when it comes time to apply for a job, tailor your answers to their specific qualifications. You can also spend some time researching your business, understanding its culture, and determining which of your strengths would be most valued.

Fortunately, you don’t have to reinvent the wheel when it comes to your strengths and weaknesses. There are a number of common (and related) features you can share with potential employers.

List of strengths and weaknesses

Not sure where to start? Take a look at these examples of strengths and weaknesses and determine which one best describes you. Keep in mind that this is a list of “soft skills” that can belong to any industry and role. Depending on the position you are applying for, you may also need to share your knowledge of specific software programs and workplace experience.

Strong points

  1. Accuracy
  2. Be careful
  3. Clarity
  4. Conciseness
  5. Creativity
  6. Determination
  7. Discipline
  8. Dedication
  9. Empathic
  10. Enthusiasm
  11. Flexibility
  12. Great listener
  13. Honesty
  14. Hard work
  15. Innovative
  16. Negotiation skills
  17. Optimistic
  18. Organizational skills
  19. Patient
  20. Learn fast
  21. Respectful
  22. Trustworthy
  23. Time management
  24. Team player
  25. Versatility

List of strengths and weaknesses


  1. Strong and cheeky communicator that can turn some people off
  2. Extremely critical of himself
  3. It takes time to adjust to change
  4. Perfectionist (which sometimes makes it difficult to delegate responsibilities)
  5. Procrastinator
  6. Slow to develop a relationship with co-workers or subordinates
  7. Shy in new situations
  8. Stress under pressure
  9. Too sensitive to the needs of others, which sometimes allows others to manipulate you

examples of strengths and weaknesses

Strengths and weaknesses of leadership

While there are many similarities, the strengths and weaknesses of leadership cover a wide range of skills. Consider the different responsibilities you will have as a leader, primarily motivating and managing employees on a daily basis, rather than just being responsible for your own work. Consider some of these common strengths and weaknesses for leaders and executives.

Strengths of leadership

  1. Passionate about their work.
  2. Able to understand the needs and emotions of others.
  3. Excellent self-management skills.
  4. Top level communication skills (including listening).
  5. Able to motivate and inspire others to do their best work.
  6. Convenient for quick decision making.
  7. Willing to be responsible for their decisions and actions.

Weakness of leadership

  1. Taking comments personally.
  2. Too focused on the end goal that the needs of employees are not listened to.
  3. Too worried about being liked.
  4. Unable to delegate responsibilities leading to exhaustion.
  5. Disrespectful attitude towards employees.
  6. Poor communication skills.
  7. Fear of making the wrong decision, which leads to not making decisions at all.

If you see yourself in any of these examples of weaknesses, it may be time to look for tutorials or workouts and do a soul search to determine why you are missing out on these areas.

How to share your strengths and weaknesses during a job interview

Now that you’ve reviewed many popular features and decided which ones best reflect who you are, it’s time to dig deeper. Ask yourself a very important question … “Why?”

Potential employers do not want a list of elegant words, they want to know you by understanding how these characteristics have served you in your previous work experience. For example, instead of saying, “I have excellent trading skills,” say, “I’ve used my excellent trading skills to work with new and existing vendors to reduce our commodity costs by 52%. “.

Paint a picture of your skills in action and tell them a (true) story that they will remember long after the last interviewee has left the building. When telling a story, remember to include:

  1. What was “life” like before the incitement incident.
  2. The problem you are facing.
  3. Different attempts to fix the problem.
  4. Which finally worked.
  5. How life looks after the incident.

This doesn’t have to be an epic novel, just a quick description of what was going on and how you had the strengths to persevere.

Of course, for some, you may be taking on a new role with new responsibilities. If you know you have the strengths you are looking for, but haven’t had a chance to use them in your current job, be honest. You might say, “I haven’t been able to use this skill in my previous job, but I hope to use it more if you decide to hire me.”

You also have the option to share a story from your personal life in which you used this skill. Just make sure you keep it professional, appropriate, and relevant to your desired position.

When it comes to communicating your weaknesses, potential employers want to know that you recognize your shortcomings and that you are actively working to become a better version of yourself. You want to be honest and open as you create context around your weaknesses and show:

  1. How you are working to improve in this area.
  2. As this weakness will not affect your performance in the proposed work.

As we discussed earlier, you will also want to avoid saying a humble presumption rather than a weakness. “I’m so quick at my job that it makes others feel intimidated around me and that’s why it’s hard for me to connect.” This is false modesty and you will do yourself no favors.

So here you are, face to face with an interviewer and they are asked, “What are your strengths / weaknesses?” Instead of being frightened, you should know that you have taken the time to give a solid answer (with supporting evidence) to this question.

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