5 Tips to Answer "What Makes You Unique?"

min read
Vera Chan

If you have found a new job opportunity and landed a job interview, one of the first steps is to start your research. There are popular questions a hiring manager can ask, but then there is also the one that throws you off guard.

What do you do when they ask you about yourself? Is it a personal question? Are they trying to test you? We cover how to approach the interview question "What Makes You Unique?" and why it has become increasingly common.

Why Do Employers Like To Ask "What Makes You Unique?"

You might be thinking if the employer is trying to trip you up. There are a few tricks to answering this question in a strategic way. It is all about how you pick and choose what to emphasise and how you structure your answers.

First of all, the answer to this question is not meant to be too personal. As in do not overshare irrelevant information or quirks about you that have nothing to do with the job role. Choose strengths that you can share with the employer. You want them to lean in your favour of choosing you as a winning candidate. Help them decide that you are the best person for the job. Show how valuable you are.

How to Answer "What Makes You Unique?"

It might be nerve-racking but this question is a great opportunity to show what makes you stand out. You have the chance at a job interview to sell yourself, so we have put together top tips to help you master the art. It does not matter if it is a video interview or face-to-face, here is what to remember:

1. Be Positive

Your unique traits that are relevant to the workplace need to sound valuable. Think about what motivates and nurtures you. Do you thrive working with challenges? Do you like problem-solving? Are you a creative out-of-the-box thinker?

2. Talk About Your Strengths

You can talk about strengths that may be a soft-skill such as networking. Or you can talk about hard-skills that can involve education or certifications. Pursue mentioning things that motivate you and avoid cliche phrases.

3. Give Examples

Back up your unique points with examples. This is a chance to show how you apply your strengths or skill sets to projects or challenges. You do not necessarily have to share statistics or figures. But help the hiring manager understand by walking them through a past experience. Choose one that is particularly relatable to the role at hand.

4. Be Concise

You may be a great talker but can get carried away. Do not waffle. Even if you develop a rapport with the interviewer, be careful to bring yourself back to the question. Circle back if you find that you are veering off course. Stay sharp and use digestible sentences that can be easily understood. Use keywords you saw in the job description, but do not go out of your way to use big or fluffy words to impress.

5. Be Truthful

Choose your battles wisely. Do not lie about your skill sets. You may get the job, but if you accept, you could find that you are thrown in the deep end. If you like about a skill you possess that is specific, you could be caught out the hard way. Some skills you cannot wing and the employer may also do a background check on you with past employers.

In The End

Remember that this is an opportunity to show how you are the ideal candidate. No matter how daunting the question is, push through your fear to show how great you are. The above pointers will help you be memorable.

Discover what other questions you should think about and prepare for a job interview?

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