How should I answer all those multiple choice questions … always try to pick the best sounding answer, right?
Wrong! Actually, the very best way to answer those questions is to select the right answer for you. The personality questionnaires have no right or wrong answer, and this is why you should pick the answer that fits you best. Trying to select the “best”, as opposed to the most honest, answers can actually have negative consequences. First, those questionnaires are designed to pick-up on this “overly positive” tendency and it will become obvious that you were trying to fake your answers. Second, since you do not know what the actual question is measuring, you may actually end up hiding some of your strengths. And last but not least, trying to cover up who you really are always makes the assessor worried about what else you’re not sharing and how valid all your other answers really are (even your best, most genuine ones!).
When the interviewer ask me for my weaknesses or my developmental areas, should I just say that I am a perfectionist and I work too many hours … that sounds good doesn’t it?
Although it may sound good … it does not sound very realistic! Everyone has weaknesses or areas they are not as effective in, so there is no point in trying to pretend you are perfect. The key thing here is, if you are as aware and forward with those areas as you are with your strengths, it shows the assessor that you are well aware of and know how to mitigate them. Knowing your weaknesses is as important as knowing your strengths as it shows the assessor that you possess both maturity and self-awareness, two highly valued qualities in the work place.
What will I get out of this exercise? Should I even bother to go back and get feedback on the results?
Absolutely! When do you get the opportunity to get unbiased, accurate, and professional feedback on your skills, strengths and weaknesses… for free? Typically, since the potential employer is requesting this assessment, all the fees are paid for and you can receive a complete feedback on your results, at no additional cost. For the one-day time investment that you put into the assessment, you will find that the one hour you spend on a meeting to get your results is well worth it, whether or not you got the position you were applying for.