Cliched – Yes
Is it still asked? – You bet it is. Perhaps more by non-HR folks, but it still gets rolled out.
I love this question. I have the same approach to any question that may be cliched but is generally asked, there is no excuse not to be prepared for it.
Most literature or examples found online provide the following advice:
Use an example of something that isnt a major skill or attribute directly relating to your job, and demonstrate how you have worked at the weakness and it is now one of your strengths…
I tend to use some of the above but in a smarter fashion.
“I recognized a number of years ago that i need work on my public speaking. I always felt nervous presenting and for me it is an essential life skill that everyone should posses. As part of the company mentoring program, i sought out a mentor that happened to be a communication coach in his spare time. He worked with me to prepare, present with the end goal of giving a 10 minute presentation with no notes, no looking at the screen. The topic could be anything.
Note to reader (The topic i choose – Why i want to be an interview coach in my spare time – this is not something i disclosed in an interview)
I worked tirelessly on the presentation, tweaking, writing, practicing, trying it out for trusted friends and colleagues- (quite like how i prepare for interviews)
I presented to my coach, he thought it was terrific and knew i had done a great job. I also made a rule with myself in work. Any time a volunteer was sought to do a presentation i had to put myself forward and get myself out of my comfort zone, i still live by this rule.
While i have improved a lot i still have a long way to go.”
What does this answer show the Interviewers about me?
🤺 Willing to learn and get better.
🤺 Sets goals, works to achieve them.
🤺 When i recognized a weakness i went all-out to improve on this.
🤺 Humble but confident and as always 100% authentic.
The most important part
By giving an awesome interview, you show (not just say) that you are a great public speaker so they wont worry about that weakness WHEN they hire you.