How to Answer 'What Kind of Animal Would You Want to Be?'

attractive woman painted as animal

During your next job interview, you may be asked odd questions like if you were an animal, which one would you want to be? Since you don’t want to be caught off guard, it is important to be prepared to answer all types of questions.

You should never go into a job interview unprepared, not having done any research about the company and specific employment position that you applied for. This article will address specific factors you should consider when answering this question.

See also: How To Answer "What Do You Do In Your Spare Time"

What the interviewer is looking for

There are a few different reasons why a hiring manager would ask you to describe what type of animal you would be and why. First, it can reveal information about your character. Second, some hiring managers may ask this question simply to see if you will be caught off guard and slip up.

Basically, they want to see how well you handle high-pressure situations when anything can be thrown your way. Additionally, the hiring manager may want to see how well you can improvise and think outside the box.

But, you shouldn’t spend too much time on the specific reason why this person is asking the question. Rather, respond in a manner that will keep you in the running as a viable candidate for the job.

How to answer the quesiton

If you are asked to describe what type of animal you would be, you have an excellent opportunity to demonstrate your creativity and originality. Take note that your response will allow the hiring manager to gain a deeper insight into how you identify yourself as a person and a professional.

Of course, no answer is necessarily right or wrong. But, you will increase your chances of impressing the hiring manager if you take the time to craft your answer to this type of question beforehand.

You have the perfect opportunity to demonstrate your creative thought process as you craft the best response. When thinking of an animal that you would be, focus on the specific job you’re applying for. For example, your favourite animal may be a cat. But, felines are considered to be solitary and mysterious animals. If you’re applying for a job that requires a team player mentality, then you might not want to describe yourself with cat-like qualities.

You want to mesh your animal choice with the requirements you need to have to get the job. Also, remember to take your time in deliberating a possible response. But, don’t over-analyze your choices. Show your creative side and have fun with this answer!


There are both positive and negative responses to this type of question. Some negative examples to give would be a snake or a turtle. A snake has implications of sneaky and deceptive qualities, not exactly character traits you want to be known for in the office. Additionally, a turtle is slow-paced and could be considered lazy and not a self-starter.

Here are some more positive responses to consider as you craft your answer to this question:

  • A lion is considered the “king of the jungle”, and that connotes a leadership style where you would be independent and able to increase productivity in the workplace.
  • An elephant can be considered a leader as well, with great fortitude and determination, along with an excellent memory.
  • If you consider yourself to be wise and able to maintain an open-minded perspective, you could say you’d be an owl.
  • For those individuals who value teamwork and cultivating a positive atmosphere in the workplace, you could say you’d be a dove. These birds are associated with peace and non-aggressive conflict resolution.
  • You could say that you would be a monkey because they are highly intelligent animals and very flexible, which are both assets in the workplace.

See also: How to Answer "Describe Your Work Style"

What type of animal do you identify with the most and why? Let us know…


This article was originally published in May 2015.