Common Interview Question – How Would You Describe Your Work Style?

DECEMBER 28, 2010 | BY MICAH

Sometimes the hardest aspect of the job interview is simply finding a way to articulate your thoughts. Several job interview questions are designed to do nothing more than test your ability to explain your own personality, experience, work habits, etc. How well you explain your abilities shows the interviewer the amount of thought you put into self-reflection, how you view those thoughts and how intelligent you are (by your ability to explain your thoughts to the interviewer).

So when you are asked to describe something as complex as your work style, your ability to answer this question eloquently is on trial. Also, this is a great opportunity to make yourself sound like a fantastic employee, so you do not want to miss the mark with your answer.

How to Answer

The best thing to do is avoid clichés. “Hard worker” is simply not impressive, since anyone and everyone can say that about themselves. Go deeper. Maybe even use examples, where applicable.

Bad Answer

“I would say that I am a hard worker. I always try to go the extra mile and bring high quality work to the table. I am also a perfectionist and a big fan of communication.”

Good Answer

“My workplace style is adaptive. In generally I try to keep to a fast paced, process focused schedule in order to complete one project and move onto another. Yet I try to be efficient and I am a bit of a perfectionist, so if the project requires me to slow down in order ensure that the final project is error free, I will do so at a moment’s notice. I work well on my own but I am happy to work within a team, and I take my role in any project seriously, so I am always dedicated and driven.”

This answer incorporates a lot of the positive qualities people look for from new hires, so that you are describing a way of working that will please employers and using phrasing that shows you have thought about your work style.

Take Away Interview Tips

  • Come up with a thoughtful answer.
  • Avoid clichés.
  • Incorporate examples if you can do so seamlessly.

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