10 Tips on how to answer the most dreaded interview question: “Tell...

10 Tips on how to answer the most dreaded interview question: “Tell me something about yourself.”


There it goes again. The most dreadful question “Tell me something about yourself”. We all have faced this fearful question in our interviews (Haven’t we?). It’s so indefinite and monotonous that the thought, “How do I even start?” often crosses our mind. Relax! we bring to you 10 exciting tips on how to answer this question and come out with flying colors.

1. Shorten it: Your answer to the question, “Tell me something about yourself” should be short, crisp and interesting. Experts say that the answer should be between 90-120 seconds. Also, try not to include what is already there in your resume, don’t say what is obvious about you.

2. Give stress to that Intangible strength: A complete WIN-WIN situation. Your skills and achievements are right there in your resume, talking about that invisible strength would surely take your interview in a positive direction. You can always say something that focuses on your dedication towards work and going beyond means to achieve your goal. For example, “The growth in the sales team rose from X% to Y% as I took the initiative to go out on more sales call with my team which helped to close more deals and get greater number of clients. This also included working late hours and more administrative work but at the end it was worth the shot!”

3. Talk less about your academics and achievement: Again, talk about things that is not present in your resume. Talk partly about your highest qualification and the achievement that you gained in that respect. For instance, ” I was among the top rankers of my college. Also, the head of the placement committee. It was because of my networking and hard work that I was able to increase the number of companies that came for placements and not to mention there was a steep rise in average salary from X to Y.”

4. Talk about your work experience: Don’t try to get too much into specifics as it would make it boring. Keep it short and interesting. Talk about the skills and strengths you learned and how you can implement it in your current job role that you are interviewing for. Here, again focus on how you brought the change. For example, ” Under my supervision the sales team increased the sale from Y to Z, which was one of the best performance in the last 5 years. I got a special recognition for this.”

5. Describe why do you need the job:  Explain why the job is so appealing to you. The interviewer is always inquisitive to know why do you want to take up the job. You can add some personal experience to the question. For example, if your are applying for the role of a journalist, you can mention how you have seen your parents work day in and out to bring some development in the society. Hence, right from the childhood you have developed a keen interest and commitment towards the particular field and would like to excel in it. Mention how the job can act as a platform to fulfill your dream as well as add to the firm’s profit.

6. Talk about the challenges: You can make the interview interesting by talking about the challenges that you faced while achieving your goals and how you overcame them. Talk in a way so that it highlights your strengths that are exactly needed for the current job role. The challenges can be anything in your academic or professional life but make sure it should be something worth talking about.

7. Describe yourself: While highlighting about yourself and your strengths like leadership, adaptive, team player, creative, problem solving and other skills never forget to give examples from your experiences to prove why they should hire you, and only you. Try and talk something that is not present in your resume.

8. Move the interview your direction: Directing the interview depends entirely on you. Give the interviewer points to ask questions on topics that you are comfortable with. Mention topics, may be some research paper or project that you know in and out and lay emphasis on it so that the interviewer gets chance to ask questions on it. Remember to always take it your way!

9. Share something personal: Never forget to mention that favorite hobby or interest that might positively reflect upon your character. This will leave a positive impact on the mind of the interviewer. For example if you are applying for a job that requires great intellect and brain, you can say how you spend hours playing chess with your grandfather or if your are applying for something that requires more human interactions then you can talk on how you love making new friends and visiting places.

10. Smile: You have a beautiful smile! Use it to nail your interview. Experts say that smile has a huge effect on how an employer feels about the candidate during an interview. “Every time you smile at someone, it is an action of love, a gift to that person, a beautiful thing.” -Mother Teresa. So, just smile…

Next time when you face this fearful question just follow the above tips and you will soon find yourself holding a job offer.