What is your greatest weakness? The BEST Answers.

5 min read
7/4/22 8:30 AM

What is your greatest weakness

This is indeed a very tricky question. Who wants to talk about one’s weaknesses?

The interviewers are assessing whether your weaknesses will get in the way of getting the job done. Employers are looking for humility and your commitment to learning and growing. There is no better place to showcase your willingness to improve.

Sample answer 1

By Gene F., Hiring Manager

I get fired up when team members brainstorm big new ideas. But unfortunately, I sometimes get completely caught up in the moment that I volunteer to do too much. I am aware that this can be a distraction in ways that can put me at risk of not getting work done correctly or missing deadlines.

So, I've been reflecting on why this happens. As I'm becoming more and more conscious of this pattern, I'm constantly working on ways to contain the negative aspects of my eagerness.

One way I do this is to still attend brainstorming meetings but by being careful about offering to do the next steps - or limit it only to projects my boss/team lead supports.

Fortunately, the job we're discussing seems well-suited for people like me who bring a rush of enthusiasm to the job and are always keen on getting better and better at the follow-through.

Why this answer worked well:

  • He shared specific details. This made the story feel relatable.
  • He shared a story about how his weakness negatively impacts his work and stresses him out.
  • He made his self-awareness into a plan to help him manage his weakness so he would be successful in the future.

Sample answer 2

By Marketing & Brand Manager Professional

In my present role as a product manager, I am responsible for specific feature building. So, I work with many cross-functional teams like engineers and designers.

One thing that I can constantly improve on is being patient and taking time to understand people’s perspectives – especially during projects considering we are always in a rush to meet tight deadlines. I am strict about wanting things to move quickly and precisely, which has made me realize that can make my partners a bit anxious.

To correct this, I’m working to help build trust. For example, I’ve been scheduling more frequent check-ins with the teams to ensure everyone is comfortable with the project timeline. And I’ve made myself more open, so they can share any missed opportunities they see as we go. This provides us with a chance to get ahead of things and ensure we’re aligned even as we work fast or on tight schedules.

Why this answer worked well:

  • A clear improvement strategy was outlined.
  • The answer was honest and demonstrated an awareness of understanding of how this weakness can affect team members.

Sample answer 3

By Mechanical Engineer Professional

My strong desire to succeed has always served me well. But I’ve come to realize that it can also be a blind spot if I’m not being honest with myself about what’s possible and what’s not.

A few years ago, I worked on a remote control. We were working on a tight schedule, trying to go from concept to mass production in six months, and there was high pressure.

Even though my team was worried that one of the parts we were using would fail, I decided to move ahead with the factory build. One of the main reasons being we had already spent $200,000 on the factory process. However, I was afraid to inform the program managers that we wouldn’t be able to hit our targets. Even though I was forced to tell them eventually, I had already lost the company money.

I’ve learned that failures can be set right more easily when addressed quickly. In addition, what I learned is the importance of being honest right up front and being realistic, even if it does not align with the outcome I want.

Now I communicate project status with program managers on a weekly basis and always make them aware of the impact and risks involved. As a result, we haven't missed a single delivery in the past four years.

Why this answer worked well:

  • Mainly the candidate took accountability for his/her actions and specific steps to prevent another issue.
  • The answer provided an honest and open self-review with a clear example that took the interviewer through the decision-making process.

Sample answer 4

By Marketing & Brand Manager Professional

I have worked on my inclination to hold back on giving harsh feedback.

I’d just been promoted to a management role and joined a project my boss was leading. The project work was about 30% baked when I joined. I knew right away that the work wasn’t strong so I spoke up, but not strongly enough. Nevertheless, the agency was pushing their work strongly, and I decided not to rock the boat.

Unfortunately, as the project progressed, I started noticing more and more issues. And as I feared, the campaign bombed.

Even though I hadn’t launched the project, I was a part of the team and owned a big piece of the failure for speaking up more assertively. I learned on that day that even if people disagree with you – be it your boss or anyone - you owe it to the team and company to properly vocalize concerns. I’ve taken this lesson a step further by creating the kind of safe space on my teams for people to dissent, push back, and disagree. I firmly believe that successful teams are built on a foundation of respectful, honest communication.

Why this answer worked well:

  • A clear case showed how this weakness was turned into an improvement for teams.
  • The candidate showcased a willingness to accept responsibility for failure.

Answer Framework

This can feel like a tricky question, but it’s an excellent opportunity to shine. Given below are some tips on how to answer:

Be humble.

You want to share an authentic story that shows you're self-aware. It's okay if you don't come off as perfect because that's authentic, which is essential for someone who will have to trust you as being capable of the role they're hiring.

Choose a trait that is not too relevant to the job.

For example, if you're applying for the role of a project manager, choose a weakness that is more related to being creative, which is a trait that doesn't disqualify you from the list of the things that would make someone a successful project manager.

Show how you manage it.

Have a fix-it strategy. For example, let’s say you have a hard time remembering product details, so you track them in your phone or side notebook. And that's okay. Share this with them shows that you've got the commitment to solving that problem and addressing it.


  • Be authentic - don’t make-up strengths that you think the employer wants to hear.
  • Be sure the strengths you project are aligned to the role you want.
  • Tell a story about your work experience.

For more BA interview questions please read- Top 20 Business Analyst Interview Questions And Answers

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