Are you preparing for a job interview? It's normal to feel anxious as you never know what questions will be asked there. One of the most frequent questions employers ask is "What is your greatest weakness?"

This article will provide you with 15 examples of weaknesses for job interviews. You'll learn how to respond professionally and honestly while putting your best foot forward.

Power over others is weakness disguised as strength.

Eckhart Tolle

Let's get started! Read on to turn your weaknesses into strengths and leave your interviewer with a positive impression of your determination and willingness to grow.

What is your greatest weakness question asked on an interview

Why do employers ask "What are your weaknesses?"

It can be a nerve-wracking experience when the employer wants to discuss your greatest weaknesses during a job interview.

It's an important question, though, that allows them to gain an understanding of your personality:

  • Self-awareness. Being aware of your weaknesses shows that you've reflected on your own skills and areas for improvement.
  • Stress management. Handling the interview question about weaknesses can reveal your skill in managing stress. Being calm and composed while discussing challenges is a good trait.
  • Honesty. Providing an honest answer about your weaknesses demonstrates integrity and transparency. Employers appreciate genuine and open candidates.
  • Problem-solving skills. Acknowledging weaknesses allows you to showcase your ability to solve problems. The HR is interested in how you address and overcome problems.
  • Adaptability. Discussing weaknesses provides insight into your readiness to adapt and learn. Employers want to know if you can identify areas for improvement and take steps to enhance your hard and soft skills.
  • Team dynamics. Understanding your weaknesses helps employers assess how well you would fit into a team. It shows your awareness of potential collaboration challenges and the ability to work on them.

Ultimately, employers ask about your weak sides because they want to hire self-aware people. It's an opportunity for you to present your weaknesses in a positive light by emphasizing your desire to grow.

By taking this question seriously and preparing a list of weaknesses for upcoming interviews, you can demonstrate that you possess these qualities.

How to answer this question?

It's common for employers to ask this dreaded interview question. But don't panic when the interviewer asks "What are your weaknesses?"

Below are some advice on responding to it:

    1. Be honest. Don't try to spin a negative into a positive. Admit your weaknesses and explain what you're doing to improve them.
    2. Focus on the positives. Show that you know yourself and your limitations and that you are working to be better.
    3. Give examples. Discuss experiences where you have faced a challenge and overcame it or identified and corrected a weak area in your performance.
    4. Prepare ahead of time. Think of some good weaknesses for job interviews and practice how you would respond if asked about them in real-life settings. This will help build your confidence so you can answer calmly when the time comes.
    5. Follow up with solutions. Illustrate that you are taking action to address your weaknesses by talking about what steps you're taking. It can be training courses or certifications, or working with mentors and coaches to help improve your skillset.
    6. Relevance to the job. Ensure the weakness you discuss is not a critical skill for the job you're applying for. This demonstrates strategic thinking about how your weaknesses align with the specific role.

Answering the question about your downsides may seem daunting at first. However, with a little preparation, you can show employers that you understand yourself, your strengths, and your weaknesses.

What is even more important, you're actively working to become the best version of yourself!

What to avoid when answering this question?

When you are answering the "What is your greatest weakness?" question in an interview, it's essential to present yourself in the best possible light.

Here are things to avoid:

    1. Irrelevant weakness. Avoid giving answers that don't relate to your job. For example, if you are aiming to land a job in customer service, saying that you "can't stand numbers" is not pertinent to the role.
    2. Generic answers. Refrain from being too general or vague. Saying "I can sometimes be too diligent" isn't helpful. It doesn't provide any information or insight into your skills or experiences.
    3. Being unprofessional. Don't make jokes or use clichés like "I'm too much of a perfectionist". Stick to real issues that are important for the position you are applying for, and how you plan on addressing them.
    4. Being too honest. Don't use examples of weaknesses that could make you look unreliable. If you say "sometimes I forget deadlines", this could give the impression that you won't be able to meet expectations.
    5. Unprofessional answers. Don't answer with a joke or something sarcastic. This can come across as if you don't take the role seriously.
    6. Blaming others. Avoid attributing weaknesses to external factors or other people. Take personal responsibility for your weaknesses and focus on your own actions and efforts to overcome them.
    7. Personal information. Don't share personal weaknesses that are not relevant to the workplace, as this might make the interviewer uncomfortable.
    8. Recent weakness. Avoid sharing problems in spheres that you haven't taken steps to get better in. Choose a weakness that you've recognized and have made efforts to become better over time.

By following these tips, you can ensure you give the best possible impression when answering the interview question about weaknesses.

Top 15 examples of weaknesses for your interviews

Addressing the inquiry "What are your major flaws" can be tricky. Here are some weaknesses examples to say in an interview.

1. Delegating tasks

I tend to have difficulty delegating tasks. I want to be hands-on, but I've realized the importance of effective delegation for team efficiency. I'm working on trusting my team more and assigning tasks based on individual strengths.

This is a great response, as it reveals that you understand and appreciate your boundaries. It also stresses the necessity of grasping the significance of delegation and teamwork.

2. Public speaking

I sometimes struggle with public speaking. However, I've enrolled in public speaking courses to enhance my communication skills. I now actively seek opportunities to practice and improve in this area.

This is an honest answer that shows humility and self-awareness. It also implies that you are taking steps to improve, such as taking communication classes and practice sessions.

Infographic on the fear of public speaking

3. Overcommitting

In the past, I've occasionally taken on too many tasks simultaneously. I've since learned to prioritize effectively, delegate when necessary, and communicate realistic timelines to manage my workload more efficiently.

This is one of the most common weaknesses for job interviews. The positive moment is proactive steps taken to address the issue by prioritizing important tasks and effective delegation.

4. Taking criticism personally

I have a tendency to be excessively judgmental of myself. I used to take constructive criticism personally. I've already developed a more resilient mindset, understanding that feedback is essential for growth and improvement.

This answer indicates that you appreciate the value of constructive criticism. Plus, it demonstrates that you grasped the concept of balancing it out with self-compassion and positive reinforcement.

5. Impatience

I sometimes find it challenging to wait for results, but I'm actively working on cultivating patience by focusing on the process and recognizing its importance in achieving long-term goals.

Acknowledging impatience demonstrates self-awareness. The importance of patience and a proactive approach to improvement show your commitment to personal growth.

6. Networking

Networking is an area where I felt less confident. To overcome this, I've attended industry-specific seminars and career fairs and sought mentorship to build professional connections.

Acknowledging a lack of confidence in networking reflects self-awareness and a commitment to improvement through practicing effective communication.

Infographic on the networking

7. Time management

I don't always manage my time efficiently. I used to procrastinate but implemented scheduling techniques and created plans to prioritize tasks effectively. This has significantly improved my productivity.

This answer illustrates that you recognize the consequences of being disorganized and inefficient with your time. The positive aspect is your improvement through the implementation of schedules.

8. Detail orientation

While I am focused on the big picture, I sometimes overlook minor details. I've implemented checklists and developed a habit of reviewing my work to ensure thoroughness.

Implementation of practical solutions, such as checklists, to deal with weaknesses and improve overall attention to detail will be appreciated by any employer. The positive aspect is the commitment to scheduling your time, demonstrating an effort to give priority to well-being.

9. Perfectionism

I tend to be a perfectionist, which sometimes makes me spend a lot of time on one task. I've learned to set realistic expectations, prioritize efficiently, and recognize when a task is sufficiently completed.

Infographic on the perfectionism

Recognizing perfectionism shows commitment to balance. It indicates an ability to prioritize and have more realistic expectations.

10. Technology proficiency

I recognize that my technical skills could be improved, particularly in specific software. I'm currently taking online courses to enhance my proficiency and stay updated on the latest technological advancements.

Recognizing a gap in technical expertise demonstrates that you have ongoing learning through specific courses or workshops. Plus, it shows adaptability and a proactive attitude.

11. Working under pressure

Making decisions in stressful situations has been my weakness. However, I've practiced decision-making scenarios to enhance my ability to think clearly in high-pressure situations.

Recognizing the difficulty in making decisions under pressure shows your commitment to stress management. Practice scenarios reflect an active approach to skill enhancement.

12. Work-life balance

Balancing work and personal life has been a challenge for me. I'm now actively setting boundaries and scheduling personal time to guarantee a healthier equilibrium between professional and personal commitments.

This response is effective because the phrase "healthier equilibrium" indicates a commitment not only to personal well-being but also to maintaining a positive and sustainable level of productivity in the professional realm.

Infographic on the professional burnout

13. Not asking for help

In the past, I hesitated to ask for help when needed. I've since realized the value of collaboration and actively seek assistance or guidance when facing challenges to enhance overall team performance.

Acknowledging hesitancy to ask someone to help shows humility and the commitment to seeking assistance when needed.

14. Handling rejection

I used to take rejection personally, affecting my confidence. I've realized that rejection is part of professional growth. Now I use it as an opportunity to learn and improve.

Admitting sensitivity to rejection shows vulnerability. The development of resilience reflects an understanding that being rejected is a chance for learning and growth.

15. Balancing goals

I sometimes struggle to balance short-term tasks and long-term goals. I'm improving my organizational skills to ensure that immediate responsibilities align with broader, strategic objectives.

Recognizing that you struggle with balancing short-term and long-term tasks shows dedication to organizational improvement. This reflects a proactive approach to aligning responsibilities with strategic objectives.

List of common weaknesses for job interviews

Other good weaknesses to say in an interview, along with brief explanations:

  • Difficulty saying "No". Finding it challenging to decline additional responsibilities.
  • Lack of creativity. Struggling with generating innovative solutions.
  • Overthinking. Spending too much time analyzing or overanalyzing situations.
  • Lack of assertiveness. Having problems expressing opinions or needs assertively.
  • Learning new technologies. Struggling to adapt quickly to new technological advancements.
  • Prioritization. Having challenges in effectively prioritizing tasks.
  • Flexibility with change. Problematic adapting to unexpected changes in plans.
  • Presentation skills. Feeling less confident in delivering compelling presentations.
  • Multitasking. Struggling to efficiently manage multiple tasks at once.

Here are examples of weaknesses that are not recommended for job interviews:

  • Incompetence to work in a team. Teamwork is crucial in most workplaces, so mentioning this raises concerns about your compatibility with the company culture.
  • Lack of punctuality. Being consistently late is unacceptable and unprofessional as it can hinder productivity.
  • Inability to handle stress. Jobs often involve stressful situations, and admitting an incapability to adapt to such situations can raise doubts about your suitability for the role.
  • Poor communication skills. Communication is a fundamental skill in the workplace, so stating a weakness in this area may lead to questioning your ability to collaborate effectively.
  • Inability to take criticism. Being unable to handle criticism means unwillingness to learn from feedback.
  • Impulsiveness. Acting without careful consideration can lead to poor decision-making, which is undesirable in most professional settings.

Question alternatives

Here are some alternative ways to ask about weaknesses:

  • "What areas do you feel you could improve upon?"
  • "Can you share some areas where you've faced challenges or obstacles?"
  • "What skills or qualities do you consider as areas for growth?"
  • "Tell me about a time when you struggled with something. How did you handle it?"
  • "What do you perceive as your limitations, if any, and how do you work around them?"
  • "Are there any aspects of your work or personality that you're actively trying to strengthen?"
  • "Can you discuss an area where you've received feedback for improvement? How did you respond to it?"
  • "What do you find most challenging in your current role or responsibilities?"
  • "How do you approach overcoming obstacles or weaknesses when you encounter them?"
  • "In what areas do you think you might need additional support or development?"

Tips on how to answer "What is your greatest weakness?"

Here is advice for responding to this question honestly, but in a way that puts you in the best light.

  • Balance humility and confidence. Strike a balance between acknowledging your weaknesses and maintaining confidence in your overall abilities. Avoid undermining yourself, but show humility in recognizing areas for growth.
  • Keep it short. Avoid long-winded answers that could drag on forever. A few sentences should suffice to answer the question adequately while still projecting a positive image.
  • Link to soft skills. Consider discussing a soft skill as your weakness. Soft skills, like patience or assertiveness, are often viewed as areas for development rather than inherent shortcomings.
  • Practice responses. Practice your response beforehand to ensure clarity and coherence. Rehearse with a friend or in front of a mirror to build confidence and refine your delivery.
  • Connect to company culture. If possible, align your weakness with the values or culture of the company. This shows that you understand the organization's expectations and are actively working towards meeting them.
  • Stay positive. Be honest, but don't be overly critical. You don't have to list all your shortcomings. Instead, focus on one or two areas where you can demonstrate improvement and growth.
  • Ask for feedback. If appropriate, you can mention you've actively sought feedback to identify areas for improvement. This shows initiative and a willingness to grow.

Avoid red flags!

  • Be cautious about sharing weaknesses that may raise a red flag for the specific role. This can be a lack of essential technical skills for an IT specialist or poor communication ability for a call center operator.

In short, acknowledge your weaknesses honestly but never dwell on them. Instead, emphasize how hard you've worked or are currently working to overcome them and focus on the positive aspects of your skills for the job at hand.


Participating in job interviews is an important part of the job search process. Now you know what is a good weakness to say in an interview. The 15 weaknesses examples provided in this article should help you to craft a thoughtful and honest response.

Remember, job interviews are an opportunity to demonstrate your qualifications for the position. Take the time to prepare and practice beforehand so you can be confident and ready when it comes to answering the interview question about weaknesses.

Good luck in your job search!

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Do I really have to talk about my weaknesses during an interview?
Yes. This will reveal to the interviewer that you possess self-awareness and a practical perspective of your abilities and proficiency. It's better to come prepared with an answer than to try to avoid the question.
Do I need to provide examples of weaknesses?
Yes, providing specific examples can help demonstrate that you can recognize areas in which you need improvement. Provide specific examples from past experiences whenever possible.
How do I choose the right weakness to discuss?
Choose a weakness that is genuine, relevant to the job, and one that you've worked on or are in the process of improving.
Can I discuss one weakness in multiple interviews?
Yes, you can mention the same weakness in different interviews, but tailor your response to the specific job requirements and company culture.
Should I share a weakness if I wasn't asked directly?
It's not necessary to tell about weaknesses if not asked directly. Focus on answering everything the interviewer asks, but be prepared if the weakness question arises.
How to avoid sounding rehearsed when discussing weaknesses?
Practice your responses but don't memorize your answers to maintain authenticity during the interview.