Interview process always include this question and it's a very important question from interviewer's perspective but it is more important for candidate too because this is the point where interviewer can decide whether he wants to go with the candidate or he might call the next candidate for the discussion.
First of all, I will share some conversations between candidate and interviewer so that you may get some idea about the mistakes usually made by candidates while answering the question.
Interviewer : What are your strengths and weaknesses?
Candidate A : My strength is that I am a positive minded person and helping tendency. My weakness is that I can't communicate properly.
Candidate B: Strength is an adaptive person, understand things easily, encouraging others. My weakness is laziness so that I don't much time to complete work it's also my positive.
Candidate C : My strengths are I'm a quick learner, I have leadership qualities, self-motivation, easy going nature and have a positive attitude. My weakness is being emotional and easily trust others.
Candidate D : STRENGTHS: Confident. Able to lead a team. Teaching qualities. Disciplined. Keep all the things up-to-date. Multitasking. Quick learner. WEAKNESSES: Forget things easily.Short tempered. Easily Bored. I can't speak my mind thought open. I can't say no to anyone who needs my help. I feeling uncomfortable until I finish my job that is assigned.
For candidates, Interview is a platform for self marketing so that to make Interviewer (client) ready to take services from him. You need to sell yourself as a good product. You need to advertise yourself in a good manner.
Marketing matters all time. As each candidate have some positive and negative points but in the end better marketing wins.
I am impatient which is the reason why I am a quick learner. But I honestly believe that being impatient is a real weakness. I expect my team members to prove themselves and start delivering on the very first assignment. In case a particular resource fails, I have a tendency to stop delegating work to them and pick up projects on my own. I am working on this attitude and in my previous organizations, my peers helped me cope up with this to a great extent. To compensate for my own weakness, I prep my people about my exact expectations. Then I give them a complete scope of the assignment followed by various “checkpoint” dates, where they can update me about their progress, with a demo/presentation if applicable. In my previous job as a Project Manager. I used to break the entire task down into manageable chunks for each employee, followed by stringent timelines about when they would circle back to me. This process worked brilliantly, helped me stay within the assigned budget and helped everyone achieve their individual targets, as they learnt.
In your HR interview questions and answers round, avoid confusing answers such as this one. It might spark a war of words. Instead of this, you need to highlight a skill-set which you feel has scope for improvement. Remember to summarize what you have been doing to improve the same.While telling your weakness you should tell the counter part of the same as well like this : I struggle to manage my time sometimes and cut too close to the deadlines. To overcome this, I have started using post-its and hourly entries in my calendar to remind me of my tasks. To add to this, I have begun organizing my time into daily tasks, weekly tasks, and long terms tasks in order to prioritize.You can go with this answer, "I have the ability to work effectively with different kinds of people. Hence, I would say that organizational skills are one of the strongest points about me. I had to meet strict deadlines and coordinate with several departments simultaneously in order to deliver a project. I was ultimately able to deliver the project on schedule. In the end, this experience made me realize that I possess good organizational skills. But the entire episode also helped me to polish my time management skills and multi-tasking abilities side-by-side."
Note : These answers are based on my experience after attending 50+ interviews in my career. Answer may get change as per your field or domain expertise.
Must Read :