Monday, June 25, 2012

What is your greatest strength?

You have all heard this question. If not, you have never looked for a job. This blog post is to update the question.

The strength question had a partner, "What is your weakness?" Regardless how you answer either question the response can be reversed. Say your greatest strength is team building. Does this mean your weakness in working independently. Most people will steer their answer based on the job description, or worse when answering their weakness, will attempt to make a negative a positive, i.e. "I'm a workaholic."

What about updating the question to, "What are your qualities?" Qualities are character traits that can define your work habits or your personality, which are both regarded important to fitting in the company's culture.

If your résumé clearly demonstrates you credentials, as it should, the interview process is to confirm and dig deeper into the position's specific skill sets. Depending on the interview process, at some point the interview will eventually be about "fit".

This post will not list qualities or provide a cheat sheet to answer the question. It's time for you to think about what qualities you can bring to the company. Remember, it's not about you. You can also apply this new thought to your current job for potential advancement, enhancement or just to save it.

Hiring managers, strongly consider this approach. You will discover more than just the best and worst of a person's traits (if the response is even reliable). You will discover multiple applicable "qualities" with potential and existing associates.

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