Getting ready for a job interview? Don’t be afraid to talk about your strengths

Employee strengths are a topic discussed in almost every job interview. If we don’t prepare ourselves properly, we can become unconvincing in the eyes of the recruiter, and improvising, in this case, may turn out to be a bad idea. Due to the fact that one of the most frequently asked questions during the recruitment process is: What are your strengths? It is worth considering, how to find your strengths and present them on your job interview. 

How to find your strengths?

Quite often, especially when our self-confidence is not where we would like it to be, we believe that we actually don’t have strengths to talk about and responding to the interviewer with such attitude could disqualify us immediately. Everyone has positive traits that allow us to be recognised amongst other candidates. Let’s analyse them in a bit more details.

Perhaps you hear a question “How can I help myself?” at the back of your head. Good. There are a few things you can do to boost your confidence. For example, browsing job advertisements in the profession of interest. Having read two or three adverts, you will be able to see what employers expect from potential candidates. Perhaps, this might be the way you realise that the desired strengths of the employee mentioned in the advertisement are in fact your strengths. Let’s also think about what you are good at, what distinguishes you and what you are proud of.

How to present your strengths?

If we are asked to present our strengths, speaking confidently will increase our credibility. We certainly should let go of learning a short speech and reciting. The recruiter must feel that the mentioned strengths of the employee translate into reality. By the same token, lying or shooting is also not an option – besides, it’s really easy to verify.

Remember not to go to extremes. Let’s choose 2, top 3 strengths and focus only on them. Of course, it’s best if we match them to the offer as much as possible. An hour-long story about our 30 strengths is certainly not going to be well received, but on the other hand, a 2-minute memory of one strength isn’t the best idea either. To lend credence to your merits, try to add an example to each one that shows that everything you say happened. Do not belittle your achievements, but also do not exalt yourself. A golden mean must be found by listing the strengths of the employee.

Employee strengths – examples

If the employee’s strengths are still remote for each topic and you have no idea what you can talk about during an interview, we present a list of examples of advantages.

Effective time management – Superior organisational skills are highly appreciated by employers, especially when the future employee needs to be multitasking. Appropriate hierarchy of tasks and their step-by-step completion can increase efficiency and save the business cost in the long run.

Example: Talk about the planning system, mention the online apps or planners you use to plan your tasks on a daily basis. Mention a situation where you have managed and completed a project consisted of several stages and that you have met the deadline due to your organisational nature. 

Creativity – this skill is valued in many industries. If it also applies to yourself, you should certainly mention it. Thanks to creativity, you can complete any tasks in an efficient and quick manner, propose new original solutions or improve existing ones.

Example: Tell the interviewer about a project that has been successful thanks to your idea. Present the advertising slogans that you created in for your previous employer. Mention how your suggestions effectively solved a problem.

Diligence – It’s not a secret that every employer would like their employees to be as hardworking as possible. Thanks to this, the workplace becomes more efficient, higher quality becomes standard, and the entire operation of the company is more effective.

Example: Tell the employer about how you have combined full-time work with an internship while studying. Mention the situation in which you have undertaken several projects. Perhaps you studied two faculties and additionally went to work? Of course, being diligent doesn’t mean that you need to take up several jobs at the same time. Carrying out many tasks in one company also shows that you are very far from laziness.

Effectiveness and persistence in action – employees who will not give up on the entrusted task are also valuable. They want to work as well as possible, despite the obstacles they may encounter on their way.

Example: Share how you have been recognised as an individual because you have finished a project that seemed to be impossible to achieve. Talk about the tasks that required maximum sacrifice and caused you discouragement but, as a result, you have completed it.

Flexibility – Flexibility is much needed nowadays, especially in the times of Covid. Employers expect the employee to quickly adapt to new conditions, projects or tasks.

Example: Talk about how you took the task over from someone who left the job overnight. How you helped with the tasks given to you to cover someone’s absence. Point out that taking over the tasks was not difficult and that you have quickly got into managing new temporary duties.

Quick adaptation to the task – Employees who want their Manager to constantly supervise them during the first weeks of work are not employees of choice. They take their management away from their daily tasks and showing a lack of their own drive to succeed. Of course, asking about the problem is not a bad thing, but the sooner they get into work, the better.

Example: Tell your interviewer about how quickly you have implemented new systems in your previous work and how little time did you need to rearrange the software structure. Perhaps it took you much less time than other employees? If so, be sure to mention it. 






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