During a job interview, you can expect different types of questions. Think, for example, of your strengths, but also your weaknesses. A sensitive topic is to discuss the times when you received criticism. For example, on your performance, a specific incident at work, self-management issues, or time management issues. These are exactly the types of examples that are of interest to interviewers.
The interviewer may ask you several other questions to get more information from you, such as:

  • What do people criticize the most about you?
  • Tell me about the most recent criticisms you have received from your boss.
  • How do you deal with criticism?

Questions like "How do you handle criticism" are behavioral job interview questions. These are strategic interview questions that require you to provide the interviewer with examples of situations you have experienced on the job. The way you answer these critical questions tells the interviewer more about your work methods and ethics.

A closely related question is “tell me about a time when you were on a failed team project,” or “what is your biggest weakness?" Or “tell me about your biggest failure.” With the right preparation, you can give interviewers answers. that they are looking for to convince them that you are the right person for the job.

Why interviewers ask you how you handle criticism

The reason interviewers ask these behavioral interview questions is to assess your future performance. For employers, the best way to predict your future job performance is to analyze your behavior in past work situations similar to those you will encounter in the position you are applying for. Of course, the interviewer knows that everyone has received some sort of criticism in their career. This is also the reason why they are not only interested in the reviews you received, but more in how you actually handled that specific review and what you did with it.

The interviewer's goal is to find out how you react to and deal with stressful or "negative" situations. For example, if the criticism you receive makes you angry, frustrated, defensive, undervalued, or motivated to perform better. In addition, it also helps them analyze how you work under different management styles and in which work environments you thrive.

Another reason to discuss the criticisms you have received is that interviewers are interested in your level of self-awareness and whether you are actively working on improving yourself.

Tips for Answering such Critical Interview Questions

There are a few steps you can take to best prepare yourself for questions about how you handle criticism. The most important thing is to remain calm when the subject is brought up. Do not respond as if you are offended or show no embarrassment. The key is to stay relaxed and focus on answering the question.

Focus on being self-aware and honest in answering interview questions. The investigator knows what everyone has made a mistake, failed or been criticized in his career. Avoid discussing criticisms or failures that have been so drastic that they have had a huge impact on your team or business.

Use an example where you received (constructive) criticism that you learned from and that helped you develop as a professional. There's a reason interviewer ask you about the reviews you've received. Show that you are that person who can take criticism, learn from it, grow and bounce back.

Before you go to your interview, make sure you have ready answers for the interview questions you expect based on your research. The same goes for answers to interview questions about reviews that you have received during your career. Make sure you choose examples from real-life situations where you have been criticized and handled well. Additionally, be sure to include what you learned from this specific review and how it has improved you as a professional.

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