This blog post is part of a series of articles analyzing some of the most popular MBA interview questions and how to best respond to them. In this post, we’ll address “What is your weakness?“:
Reason for asking the question: To ensure the applicant is humble enough to recognize that nobody is perfect, and to see how introspective he or she can be in an assessment of oneself.
How to prepare: This question requires some real reflection. Nobody is perfect, yes, but one can always be striving to be his or her best self. In a work context, what areas do you need to develop? Where do you find yourself stuck? Is there a consistent theme that comes up in your annual review – something you need to work on? Jot a few things down as you work on answering this question. Sometimes we don’t want to acknowledge our weaknesses to others – a natural thing!
Once you have identified a few areas for improvement, think about how to portray those weaknesses so they could also be considered strengths. For example, being too detail-oriented might bog you down with too much work, but it ensures you are thorough, leaving no stone unturned. In this particular example, you are overworked, BUT you also have a strong work ethic.
Important things to remember: As you detail your weaknesses, be sure you also identify how you are working to improve them.
Additional things to consider: Try to have at least two weaknesses to discuss, and don’t have them be situational, such as, “my network is weak since I am primarily surrounded by IT people.”
Jen Weld worked as an admissions consultant and Former Asst. Dir. of Admissions at Cornell’s EMBA program (4 years) prior to joining Accepted. She has an additional 10 years of experience in higher ed and corporate marketing. Want Jen to help you get Accepted to business school? Click here to get in touch!