It may sound like a cliché interview question, but do you REALLY know what your strengths and weaknesses are? Here's an exercise to find out.
What are Your Strengths and Weaknesses?
Take a few minutes and clear your head. Then grab a pen and paper and make two columns. Under the first, make a detailed list of your strengths. This may include things like:
''Good leadership skills''
''Enjoy being with people''
''Strong computer skills''
''Ability to multi-task''
Then in the second column list your weaknesses, or the areas that you know that you need to improve on. For example:
''Have a hard time working under pressure''
''Don't meet deadlines very well''
The key is to be completely truthful. If you are dishonest, you may be fooling yourself into thinking that you're capable of working at a job that you're just not cut out for.
(Now, this isn't to say that you can't improve upon your weaknesses. Maybe that's all you need to do is identify them, and make goals to change them.)
After your list is complete, write down the skill requirements of the jobs you have been applying for, and match them up with your two columns. If you have been applying for jobs that require working with minimal supervision, but you're not very self-motivated, perhaps these aren't the right kind of jobs for you.
Enlist the Help of Others
If you want an even better idea of where your strengths and weaknesses lie, ask a former employer, co-worker, or friend to review your list. The truth may sting a little at first, but in the long run, you'll have a very good idea of what work areas you should be applying for, and which ones to avoid.