There are a number of dreaded interview questions. “Tell us about your biggest weakness” is certainly one, as it can be tricky to find a way to turn a negative into a positive without seeming fake or like you’re bragging. Another one that often stumps job seekers is “Tell us something unique about you.” It seems harmless, but it can be hard to think of something worthy enough to bring up during the interview process. Surely the fact that you like to drink wine won’t suffice, yet talking about your extensive volunteer work seems forced.
So how do you answer this common yet confusing question? Here are some tips:
Offer a quote.
Offering a quote or mantra that you live your life by shows that you’re focused and have a strong sense of who you are and what matters to you. This illustrates that you’re analytical in nature too.
Say, “I’m extremely passionate about _________”
It’s not terribly important what you’re passionate about, as long as it’s appropriate and legal. Employers want to hire people who gladly invest their time and energy into something. Passionate people are more dynamic and bring a positive energy to the office.
Say, “My friends and family would say that I’m _________________”
This shows that you’re self-aware, and also gives you more of an opportunity to illustrate your personality, including your strengths.
Say, “The compliment I get most is ______________”
Again, this speaks to self-awareness, but it also gives you the chance to give a testimonial of sorts about yourself. Whether people say they can always count on you when they’re in a tough situation or that you always make them laugh, it’s a great chance to showcase your strengths to a potential employer.
Say, “If they were to make a movie about my life….”
It’s amusing, self-reflective, and memorable at the same time. Plus, everyone loves talking about movies.
Offer a summary of who you are in just a few words.
This illustrates your ability to be concise, which is important in a business setting, and it also shows that you know your core strengths and personality traits.
When you head into a job interview, expect to field this question and you can use it to your advantage. Instead of floundering and trying to think of something witty to say, use the inquiry to steer the dialogue toward your strengths or recent accomplishments. Have a few things in mind that you’d like to showcase, and find a way to answer the question so that you can hit on these talking points in a modest way.