Common Interview Question: Do You Consider Yourself Competitive?
“Not only am I not competitive. I am the MOST not competitive.”
Your personality plays a role at the workplace, so it is not uncommon for jobs to ask you about specific aspects of it. Being competitive is one such quality. However, unlike other personality questions, it may not be obvious what the employer sees as a quality attribute.
How to Answer
Competitiveness is not a bad thing, despite how often it is demonized by those that lose often. Being competitive implies that you try to be the best at everything you do. There is nothing wrong with that, provided that you do not treat someone poorly to get where you want to go. However, there is also a negative stigma associated with competition, probably because people do treat others poorly after “winning.” So the best answer incorporate both, as will be described below.
“I do not consider myself competitive.”
So what you are saying is, you don’t try to be the best at things. This does not sound like a positive quality.
“Absolutely. I am competitive with myself and on behalf of the organizations I am associated with. I want to always improve upon what I did in the past. There is no such thing as true perfection, but I like to challenge myself to see how close I can get to achieving it. I also want whatever company I work for or group I am affiliated with to be the best available.”
There you go. You’re competitive, but only with yourself. It’s not a bad thing to be competitive with others, but you never know what kind of stigma the employer has about competitiveness. If you are applying for a commission job in sales, perhaps you want to say straight out that you are competitive, but if you are applying for any standard job, limit the competitiveness to yourself, but definitely claim you are competitive.
Take Away Interview Tips
- Yes, you are competitive.
- There is nothing wrong with being competitive. Embrace it. Just be careful about your answer.