Interview Question: How Well Do You Handle Pressure?

JUNE 11, 2010 | BY MICAH

There is no such thing as an easy job. Every job contains varying levels of stress, and all jobs require you to worry about something. Pressure is inherent in any job, because any job that doesn’t have pressure is a job that will probably be cut from the business.

Employers will sometimes ask you directly how well you handle pressure. Your job will probably have deadlines, people to report to, etc. Your job will have pressure. Guess how you should answer this question?

The Obvious Answer and How to Present It

Employers will ask you how well you handle pressure. Your answer is “Extremely Well.” That much should be obvious. You should answer the question confidently. You. Handle. Pressure. Well. Drive the point home. Don’t leave any doubt by thinking about your answer.

However, if you want to get bonus points with the employer, you should consider ways to expand on this answer. Anyone can say they handle pressure well, but you want to guarantee that you do with verbal proof.

How Do You Do That?

There are two ways to show the employer you can handle pressure well. The first is to give an example from your past job. You can answer the question thusly:

“Yes, I absolutely handle pressure well. At my previous employer, I was counted on every day to handle short deadlines and the management of funds and staff. A job is not a job if there is no pressure…”

Another way to answer the question is to simply expand your answer to something that makes you sound ready for the pressures of the job. A good example would be to say:

“Yes, I handle pressure well. In fact, in many ways I prefer it. Pressure keeps you focused, and ensures that you are motivated to be active and accomplish your tasks, and I enjoy that motivation…”

You will have to tailor an answer based on your experiences, but as you can see, both of these answers not only tell the employer that you can handle pressure, but that you are also ready for it. These types of answers are how you set yourself ahead of the pack. Most other applicants are going to say they handle pressure, but few applicants are going to expand on that answer and truly impress the employer with their response.

Take Away Interview Tips

  • Always tell the interviewer that you handle pressure well.
  • Expand on your answer to get bonus points with the employer.

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