Oh, you don’t have any? Hmmm. You probably won’t be hired. Everyone has some and to overcome this, it’s all about how you position your answer. Most people assume that the following answers will usually do the trick:

• I’m a perfectionist
• I’m reliable/dependable to a fault, even when I’m sick
• I take care of the customer/client, even when I may have to bend some rules
• I know this is a writing job, but I hate writing and am not very good at it

The problem with these answers is that everyone uses them, and a skilled interviewer will see right through them. You see, they don’t tell anyone anything. Or, worse, you’ve just talked yourself out of a job.
So the question arises – how do you share a weakness honestly without ruining your chances for the position?

It would never be wise to lie. Likewise, it would never be wise to flat out say that you often come in late, can’t get your work done in a timely or correct way, can’t get along with others, etc. That’s career suicide. Thus, the trick is to take these types of negatives and to turn them into positives. For example, if you’re chronically late and it was due to a situation that no longer exists, then you tell the story that way - “My (fill in the blank) was sick with a very severe illness and this often caused me to be late. I’m pleased to report that (s/he) is now better, and all of those issues are now fully resolved”. Or, “I mistreated a customer once and I’ll never forget it. I realized later that it was a bad experience for everyone, and I recognized it as a weakness of mine [whatever the mistreatment was] and so I’ve taken a course on customer service to help me be better prepared to deal with that type of situation again”. That shows initiative and class, and that you learned something and overcame an obstacle.

Honesty didn’t hurt you; it likely helped you. Significantly. People want to hire people who they trust, and someone who is self-aware and who take responsibility for their own actions is usually someone who can be trusted.

Author's Bio: 

Michael Trust, MPA, SPHR-CA, is a Certified Career Coach and a Certified Executive Career Coach, who helps people find their passion and fulfill their dreams as they relate to careers through his organization, Trustworthy Coaching, www.TrustworthyCoaching.com. Mr. Trust’s Coaching, Business, and Human Resources experience spans twenty years, and he has had major roles in staffing in all of his Human Resource positions. In addition, he has coached individuals at all career levels relative to their career paths, job search strategies, business strategies, and related areas. Mr. Trust is also a member of the International Coach Federation (ICF).