What are your two strengths when speaking?

Interview: Name strengths and weaknesses

There is one question that every interview cannot be imagined without: namely, your strengths and weaknesses. Completely unprepared, the question of your own personality traits can quickly throw you off track. Mainly thanks to the already existing nervousness. At the top of the to-do list when preparing a job interview is therefore: Finding strengths and weaknesses and using examples.


1) Strengths - sounds easier than it is
2) Find the right choice of words
3) Admit weaknesses, but in moderation
4. Answers to the question about strengths in the interview
5. Answers to the question about the weaknesses in the interview

Strengths - sounds easier than it is

The question of strengths in the interview is actually the simpler of the two. At least one should think so. Yet: many people find it extremely difficult to make statements about their own character. In addition, we are brought up to be humble from an early age and are suddenly supposed to brag about our skills. Quite a few of us are really reluctant to present ourselves to our employers in this way "Advertise" to have to. But of course the potential new supervisor would like to know in which areas he could particularly count on you, where your key qualifications are or what your self-assessment is. We are also happy to aim to embarrass you, to see how much you can stay calm in difficult situations. So all the better if you can answer the questions credibly and appropriately with a smile on your face. Appropriate, what does that mean?

Find the right choice of words

Showers and overestimates are not welcome anywhere. Especially not if you are to be used in a team later. Insecure personalities who do not trust themselves, on the other hand, are just as red rag for every employer. So it is now a matter of finding the right level of self-confidence and humility and above all: to be honest! If you set the expectations of your counterpart too high, in the worst case you will be faced with a mountain of excessive demands and self-imposed pressure to perform. Instead, compare the strengths in question with the job posting profile in advance and remain optimistic and authentic with regard to them. Find suitable examples from your career and prove each strength mentioned in the interview with the relevant experience that you have already gained.

Admit weaknesses, but in moderation

A classic is the attempt to name weaknesses that the HR manager would like to hear or to convert real weaknesses into positive characteristics. There will hardly be anyone who does not already have the sentence "I tend to work too much and to push myself too hard and to put my private life in the background" hasn't heard it five times. You won't get more than an incredulous smile for it. And not being able to name any weaknesses in the interview tends to create a negative image for your counterpart. After all, nobody is perfect. It would be much more likely to assume that you have not adequately prepared for the interview. But if you can't think of anything straight away, just read through old testimonials or ask friends and acquaintances.

However, please note: Do not mention any weaknesses in the interview that could significantly reduce your suitability for the proposed position. Rather, choose marginal areas of future activity and convey a credible willingness to work on yourself. In addition, unless specifically asked about a certain number (usually three) of strengths and weaknesses, you should never name more weaknesses than strengths.

So much for theory, but what does it look like in practice?

If you would like examples to clarify the above-mentioned basic rules in more detail, read on here ...

... possible answers to the question about strengths in the interview:

  1. I quickly get used to new topics and am flexible. As you can see in the certificates, in my previous position I regularly took on new projects from a wide variety of areas of responsibility and successfully completed them.
  2. I'm good at dealing with stress, after all, I raised three children.
  3. I really enjoy working in a team and have never had trouble with colleagues. As you can see in my résumé, I have always worked together in small teams, which was a lot of fun.
  4. I can solve conflicts and have even completed further training to become a mediator.
  5. I am very creative. In my spare time I have been taking a painting course for over 10 years and have learned to sometimes look at situations like paintings from different angles.

As you can see, it's all half as wild. Just stay authentic and substantiate what has been said with tangible experiences or testimonials.

Answers to the question about the weaknesses in the interview:

  1. I'm shy and don't have much experience speaking in front of a group. This situation often makes me nervous.
  2. I get impatient quickly and have a hard time waiting for results.
  3. I haven't had too much experience working with Microsoft Access yet.
  4. I've wanted to learn a second foreign language for a long time, but I never got around to it.
  5. Sometimes I find it difficult to say “no”.
  6. I'm not a morning person and need a lot of time and coffee in the morning to wake up.
  7. I tend to talk too much and then I find it difficult to laugh at myself from time to time.

Would these weaknesses be a reason for you as a HR manager not to hire the applicant? Probably not. As long as you do not mention the fear of flying as a pilot or a lack of nerve strength as a surgeon, you have many opportunities to sell yourself sympathetically and honestly through weaknesses. And even if you're through one "No" If you fall out of the ordinary, you have certainly saved yourself from the wrong job. Here is an example from real life: An applicant from the socio-educational field had to answer with a clear “no” to the question of whether he dared to be a competent contact person for long-term unemployed people with often significant financial, social or health problems. The interview ended suddenly. However, three weeks later he received a call asking if he would like to work on the team with other areas of responsibility.

Photo credit: Mangostar / Shutterstock.com


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