This question is asked in the majority of interviews so you should always be prepared for it. With that said it can be one of the most difficult questions to answer particularly for those who aren’t used to talking about themselves. But if you’ve prepared an answer beforehand then it makes the task easier because you won’t have to think on your feet.
Bear in mind that the interviewer is assessing how well you could potentially fit for the job, team and culture of the organisation so make sure your answer is relevant.
A good approach in practicing this question is to thoroughly revise the job description, person specification and your career history the following items will provide the foundation of your answer
- Say Who You Are / Attributes – confirm the most important attributes for the role because if you’ve gotten to the stage where they’ve requested an interview you should be a very good match and be in a position to refer to attributes – which you possess – that match the role, during the interview.
- Business Fit – The values/culture of the business could also be useful to have up your sleeve so look at the company profile to understand if you and the employer are on a similar wavelength
- Expertise and Skills – analyse the most important skills required for the job against your skills set to find similarities that you can refer to at interview stage
- Achievements – make a note of all the significant milestone that would really suit the role you are interviewing for and set them out as achievements
Now that you know the requirements of the job and company inside out you can begin to think about how you can answer the question within two sharp and succinct sentences that showcase the relevant and most poignant aspects of your research. An answer might begin along the lines of,
“I’m a Marketing Manager who has received awards and recognition for developing campaigns that have resulted in average 99% uplift in niche customers for my clients which has meant that we’ve had repeat business with our clients to the value of £3.3Million per year.”
You could then go on to mention ….
“I enjoy passing on my insight to my colleagues and to those I manage and in my previous roles with X, Y and Z I’ve played a significant role in helping those I manage to work successfully and independently on their own projects and achieve promotion…….”
The key is to be specific and judge the mood and keep an eye on the body language of the interviewer to determine their reaction and ask them if there is “anything more specific” that they would like you to talk about or if they would like you to “go into more detail” about what you’ve talked about so far.
The job might require someone who is able to work under pressure in which case you should say you’re used to working in high pressure scenarios and give a brief example from previous job.
Preparation and practice is everything. Remember, if you hesitate about yourself, your interviewers will doubt whether you fit their bill of requirements. After all, if you don’t know about you, who does?
Now it’s time for you to begin to prepare for your interview but if you’re not sure what to do, you can contact me to talk more about your interview strategy