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How to Answer “Give Us One Good Reason Not to Hire You”

Many experienced interviewers choose to make job interview questions that influence candidates to reveal their biggest weaknesses. The “give us one good reason not to hire you” question might not be as common as “Tell us your biggest weakness” but it is a question that you should be prepared for nonetheless.

This article provides some tips on how to deal with tough interview questions such as “give us one good reason not to hire you” and lists some possible responses:

#1 Answer the question honestly

This question serves a hidden purpose. It is intentionally more difficult as it is phrased in a way that allows interviewers to test how honest you are. Therefore, giving an honest answer is vital. Perhaps you could refer to a minor quality that has little or no effect on work and is common to most people, such as memory:


    - “I have a terrible time with names. Even though I quickly learn the names of those who I work with on a daily or weekly basis, I often find it hard recalling names of people I see a few times a year”   

However, your answer will depend on the job you are applying for. This means that you can’t refer to memory issues if you are salesperson or someone who is providing face-to-face customer support on a daily basis.

#2 Turn the question around

 Why shouldn’t we hire you? Well, I don’t see a reason not to! Try turning the question around by explaining interviewers why they should hire you instead:

    - "I think you should hire me because I believe I am a good match to the position in terms of skills and knowledge needed for the job and I don’t see anything that would cause friction here”.

Alternatively, describe an issue or trait that is typically positive, but takes you to extremes such as being perfectionist:

    -  “I am a perfectionist and have realised that this has gotten in the way of my work in the past. While the results always exceeded expectations, I have spent more time working on a project than was needed. This helped me develop a balance between managing time and producing results that allowed me to get my work done in time and still exceed expectations”.  

#3 You shouldn’t hire me because…

An excellent way to answer this question is by tailoring your answers to describe what kind of work environment you would like to be working in:

    -  “You shouldn’t hire me if you only want people who work from 9 to 5 who never put in extra effort. I would like to work for a company that needs and appreciates hard work”.

    -  “You shouldn’t hire me if you don’t generally work with people from other cultural backgrounds. I am the kind of person who values diversity and respects individuality and would like to see more of that within a work environment”.

    -  “You shouldn’t hire me if you want your team to require a lot of hand-holding. I am able to work independently effectively and take actions where appropriate”.

#4 Deflect the question

What you could do is introduce a quality that is negative in some environments and positive in others. This will show the employer that you have developed an understanding around the company’s environment and what it’s expected from you which is a huge plus if you are going to be chosen for the position.

    -   “Sometimes I get frustrated with the slow pace of work some people have. When someone wants me to complete a task, I like to complete it as soon as possible so that I can move on to the next one. I don’t think I could be a good fit in a company which hasn’t got a fast-paced work environment”.

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So now that you know how to answer “Give us one good reason not to hire you”, you can prepare yourself for answering other similar types of job interview questions based on weaknesses! Have you ever confronted with this type of question? How did you manage to deal with it? Leave your comments below.