How to answer the “Tell Me About Yourself” Interview Question

How to answer the “Tell Me About Yourself” Interview Question

As a job seeker, you’ve likely encountered the dreaded “tell me about yourself” question in an interview. This seemingly innocuous icebreaker holds immense weight, shaping the interviewer’s perception of you and influencing your chances of landing the job. To answer the ‘tell me about yourself’ question, we’ve consulted our executive search consultants and compiled their top tips!

Why This Question Matters

The “Tell me about yourself” question is more than just a formality; it serves as a window into your personality, communication skills, and background. Employers utilise this opportunity to assess your suitability for the role and gauge your potential fit within the company culture. Alongside our top 10 interview tips, we hope our experts offer a useful resource for the inevitable question!

Planning Your Answer Strategically

Before crafting your response, carefully review the job description and company website to identify the qualities and skills they seek in a candidate. Researching the company’s values, approach, and recent developments will further enhance your understanding of their expectations.

Next, scrutinise your CV to extract relevant highlights that align with the job requirements. Prioritise showcasing:

  • Your strengths and abilities
  • Areas of expertise
  • Professional and personal passions
  • Your career motivations
  • Your future career aspirations

Structuring Your Response

When looking at how to answer the ‘tell me about yourself’ question, conciseness is key while providing sufficient detail to showcase your key achievements and potential value to the company. Focus on one or two impactful projects and articulate their outcomes succinctly. Demonstrate your enthusiasm for the role and your genuine interest in the company. Reference recent news or developments in the industry to illustrate your knowledge and engagement.

Things to Avoid When Answering The “Tell Me About Yourself” Question

While crafting your response, steer clear of these common pitfalls that can raise red flags for employers:

  1. Overly Personal Details: Refrain from delving into your personal life (beyond maybe briefly referring to your key hobbies or interests) or academic history. Stick to relevant professional experiences and aspirations.
  2. Job Complaints: Avoid criticising your current or previous employers. This conveys a negative attitude and suggests you’re primarily seeking an escape rather than a rewarding opportunity.
  3. CV Reiteration: Simply regurgitating your CV content indicates a lack of preparation and initiative. Strive to personalise your response and engage the interviewer.

How to Answer “Tell Me About Yourself” from a Recruitment Expert

Here’s a “Tell me about yourself” response:

“I’m a [personality trait] individual with [length] years of experience in [current job title]. I’m particularly passionate about [aspect of your role] and believe this opportunity aligns perfectly with my desire to explore it further.

My core strengths include [list key strengths]. I’m consistently recognised for my ability to meet deadlines, communicate effectively, and manage multiple tasks simultaneously. My manager consistently praises my enthusiasm and attention to detail.

I consider myself to be a hardworking, resilient, and tenacious professional, I’m known for my unconventional approach to problem-solving. Outside of work, I’m an avid [top one or two hobbies].

I’m eager to take the next step in my career and contribute my skills to a leading [xx] organisation like yours. I’m deeply passionate about [specific company values or beliefs] and driven to make a meaningful impact through my work.”

Final Tips

Remember, brevity is key. Your opening response sets the tone for the entire interview. Capture the interviewer’s interest while showcasing your personality and potential value.

CJPI Insights
CJPI Insights
CJPI Insights Editor

This post has been published by the CJPI Insights Editorial Team, compiling the best insights and research from our experts.

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