How to Answer: What is Your Greatest Accomplishment?

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Interviews can feel nerve-wracking even to the most well-practised candidate. Remembering all you know about the company while trying to keep calm and create a great first impression can be tricky.

When asked a question about your biggest accomplishment or greatest achievement, many people struggle with how to pitch themselves.

Here are our top 5 tips to answer the interview question “What is your greatest accomplishment?”

Practice your delivery

It’s best to have a couple of different examples you could talk about for this question, in case you have already used one example in a previous interview answer. Test out your various accomplishments by talking them through out loud in advance of the interview and work out which ones work best. Practice with the type of language you want to use so that you sound confident but not arrogant, but don’t script out your answers word for word – you could come across as inauthentic and robotic.

Consider your structure

Deliver your answer in a logical, easy to understand way. Outline the context of the accomplishment, how you approached it, the action you took, and the result. Don’t rush your answer, but be concise and specific about what you did, focusing on your specific contribution, even if there were others involved.

Demonstrate passion and impact

Talk about something you are genuinely passionate about, and let your enthusiasm come across in a measured and professional way. Talk about the wider impact that your accomplishment had – for example if it was repeated or adopted by others in future – and don’t forget to bring in what personal strengths you utilised to achieve your accomplishment.

Bring in your ‘Why?’

Interviewers are interested in why you’re proud of your accomplishment, and what motivated you to do it in the first place. Share how this accomplishment fits in with your overall career purpose, and highlight how it links to other professional goals you have accomplished or hope to accomplish in the future.

About the author:

Hannah Salton worked in corporate HR and recruitment for 8 years before making the move to become a career coach and consultant. She helps people take control of their professional lives, empowering them to create exponentially higher levels of career satisfaction. For more information, visit www.hannahsalton.co.uk or connect with her on LinkedIn.

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