Answering Behavioral Questions: Your Failure, Your Success!

3 min read

Behavioral questions are focused on determining how an applicant will react in certain employment-related situations. Interviewers today believe that your past performance in the workplace can predict your future performance in their company.

Rather than asking on how you would perform and behave, they will just ask how did you behave. The interviewer wants to know how you handled a situation before, instead of asking what you might do in a given situation.

Tell Me about a Failure

Based on a research, the toughest interview question today is “Tell me about a time you failed.” More and more interviewers are including this type of question in their standard behavioral interviews. Some of them will even tell you that this is very important for you to succeed a job interview.

But unfortunately, most candidates are having a hard time in answering this type of question. Why is that? Behavioral questions are critical enough, especially if it’s about a certain negative experience that you’ve encountered in your past workplace. This kind of experience may be hard for you to talk about because you want to present yourself in the best possible way.

How will you talk about failure without harming your job offer? Look on for these guides on how to answer tough questions about failure.

Answering Behavioral Questions About Failure

It is really necessary to prepare an interview story about a failure because, as mentioned earlier, this question has become extremely common. It is also a question that can really affect your application if you screw it up. Some interviewers still stick to the traditional “shiny” questions that ask about your awesome teamwork skills. But isn’t better when you’re always prepared?

When preparing your answers for the questions about failure, keep in mind the STAR format. This format is a job interview technique used by interviewers to gather all the relevant information about a specific capability that the job requires.

In creating a STAR framework, you simply write down a few bullet points for each of the key aspects of your story (Situation/Task, Approach, and Results). This method allows you to hit all of your key points while keeping your answer concise.

Choosing a Good Failure Story

Before you make your STAR framework, you must first choose the right failure story to talk about. It’s really important to decide a story that will represent you well. Here are some guidelines that you can consider:

Pick a genuine failure.

Don’t try to cover things up. You’re not fooling anyone. If the interviewer wants you to tell a failure story about your past workplace, at least try to bring out a story that has happened a long time ago. Pick a story wherein something fairly important didn’t go well due to lack of your actions.

Don’t exaggerate.

You don’t have to confess your deepest and darkest secrets. Do not choose a kind of failure that resulted to a serious personal mistake. A team failure will work because you share responsibilities as a group.

Focus on your learning.

Discuss the things that you’ve learned after that failure. Talk about why you think things went badly, what you would have done, and what you will be doing to move forward.

Don’t Forget Practice Makes Perfect

We all know that candidates who prepare and practice land more job offers. You should certainly have considered the rough outlines of how you will answer any given type of question. You need to write down the questions you expect to be asked, and then the best answer for it.

Passing the behavioral questions is a great stepping stone to succeed a job interview that you’re aiming for. So be sure to answer in the best possible way that you can.

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