Every time I have ever interviewed for a position in the apartment industry, I have dreaded hearing those five words. Of course I am human and naturally flawed, but I am in this interview to cast myself in a positive light. That makes answering this question all the more difficult. How do you tell someone you are not the perfect leasing consultant, assistant property manager, or apartment groundskeeper while simultaneously conveying that you are “perfect” for the position?
It turns out, that this question is your selling moment! There is no better time during the interview to shine than when answering this one simple question. Here is the trick:
Turn your perceived weakness into a positive attribute of yourself in a way that will contribute to the position you are seeking. The point of the question is not your weakness but how you overcome it.
How? Let me give you some examples of positive responses to this question.
“My biggest weakness is I do not have much experience with PowerPoint or Excel. However, I am currently taking a course to increase my skills and will be at or above an advanced level by the time I finish the course.”
“I sometimes push my people too hard. I like to work with a sense of urgency and not everyone is always on the same page. I know that with more patience and allowing my team members to demonstrate professionalism, we can still be successful at an appropriate pace.”
“I tend to get too focused on one task so that I don’t always get around to the rest when I should; however, I overcome this by setting deadlines for myself to work toward.”
“I struggle with public speaking. However, I constantly challenge myself by taking on public speaking roles in the apartment community for increased practice, and I have improved greatly over the years.”
And sometimes, depending on the environment of the interview, your comfort level with the person interviewing you, and the position, honest humor works as well:
“I am absolutely terrible at baseball; it’s really quite embarrassing. But with the way the Houston is playing, who would notice?”
Take a really hard look at yourself well before the interview. What is your weakness and how do you try everyday to improve on it? How you overcome is the most important part of your answer.