In my last post, we discussed the dreaded “weakness” question that almost always comes up in any interview (see my post here). But we don’t want to forget our strengths. After all, this is your time to shine in your interview.
It’s wonderful if you are able to list your strengths, but why are these strengths? You may view these qualities as your strengths, but an outsider looking in may see them as normal qualities every human being has. The challenge in the interview is not listing your strengths, but rather it is showcasing them.
Preparing your list
Before your interview, just as we did with our weaknesses, make a list of your strengths that you want to discuss. Pull out 3-5 good, unique strengths. Make sure that they are relatable to the position in which you are interviewing… be sure to check the job posting for your plan of attack.
Bring uniqueness to the table
Be able to describe to the interviewer how these strengths make you unique and why you consider them strengths. Stating that you have great communication skills is just not enough. How are your communication skills “better” that the other candidates? This is your time to use those convincing skills!
Probably one of the most important things you can do when discussing your strengths is being able to provide very specific examples. The best examples include how you used these strengths to promote positive change, save money, or increase productivity in your previous positions.
Don’t stop at the “strengths” question. Keep (subtly) bringing up your strengths and what skills you can bring to this new company throughout the entire interview. Really convince the interviewer of your ability to make major changes to help the company!
Remember to be confident in your answers. Employers like to see this confidence—it shows that you know who you are and that you are very in tune with what you can do. Truly believing that these strengths are valuable is key to confidence. Own them, they are yours and they ARE important.
The interview is definitely the most vulnerable time when searching for a new career. There are so many things that can go wrong… But now is the time to change your thinking… there are so many things that can go RIGHT! Mastering the strengths and weakness questions is just a small part of the puzzle, but it is also one of the most important.
Good luck with your job search journeys!
Let me know your thoughts and experiences with interviews. How have you answered these questions in the past?