You know that stupid job interview question where the interviewer asks you what your biggest weakness is? It’s a punchline at this point — I’ve even asked it recently just to see the reaction I’d get from the candidate. I don’t recommend this however, as it’s neither as insightful or as funny as it looks on paper.

In the past, I’d always had an answer for this question, and it wasn’t the standard:

• I work too hard.
• I’m a perfectionist.
• I care too much.

My answer was honest and ugly.

“I’m contrarian to a fault. That’s not to say I disagree with everything anyone says. In fact, the opposite, I’m a swell team player. But if you push me in a direction I don’t believe I should go, I will vehemently push back. Hard. Just because. Even if I know I’m going to lose.”

This answer was solid for three reasons:

1) I got to use the word “vehemently” correctly in a sentence.

2) There was rarely any follow up, because the interviewer was really just expecting me to choose one of the above BS answers so they could jump on it.

3) If the company I wanted to work for was worth working for, this was the right answer.

Read the rest at:

http://joeprocopio.com/contrarian-to-a-fault.asp

(C) Joe Procopio