What is your proudest accomplishment? - NewBalancejobs
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What is your proudest accomplishment?

What is your proudest accomplishment?

Employers love asking questions about your greatest professional achievement or accomplishment and they expect a detailed story. So you need to be ready. The same question can be asked in different variations such as:

  • What is your biggest achievement?
  • What is your greatest accomplishment?
  • What is the proudest moment in your life?

“What is your proudest accomplishment?” This is one of the most asked questions during interviews.
When an interviewer asks you this question, they are trying to figure out what kind of attributes you value, how efficient you are in relation to your job, and how well you tackle hindrances to achieve a set target or goal. This is perhaps why it’s popularly regarded as one of the best, efficient and common interview questions asked.

“What is your greatest accomplishment?” or “What is your greatest professional achievement?” is regarded as a behavioral interview question used in interviews to assess skills and competences through discussions about your past experiences.
Some examples of other behavioral questions include:
• Tell me about a time you solved a difficult problem.
• Tell me about a time when you disagreed with a team member.
• Tell me about a time you failed.
• Tell me about a time you had to assume leadership for a team.

Although some reasons have been sighted above why “What is your greatest achievement?” and its similar variations are asked during interviews, it is paramount to understand what the question is designed to evaluate:

  • The question is designed to evaluate what you value most in life, how this can be of benefit to the company and whether you are a good fit for the company’s culture.
  • The question is designed to evaluate your view on success and whether it coincides with the company’s commercial goals.
  • The question is designed to evaluate whether you possess desired soft skills such as teamwork, communication, leadership, potential, creativity, adaptability, and problem-solving.
  • The question is also designed to evaluate if you’re ambitious and have the drive to succeed.

The behavioral foundation is one of the most leading factors that affect a candidate’s eligibility for a given job. It allows the interviewer to explore each and every part of the candidate’s behavioral constituents, so it’s advisable to prepare extensively with them in mind before your big interview.

Best Method to Answer What is your proudest accomplishment:

The most effective method to answer these questions and its variations is to follow the S.T.A.R format (Situation/ Task/ Approach/ Result). You should answer such questions by following the S.T.A.R method in a reverse manner, meaning you’d start with the result and end with the situation, giving the interviewer more chances to ask you questions and to understand better what the situation was.


Framing your answer

Though your accomplishments in life give can be great motivation and boost confidence. But these kinds of questions can put you in a difficult position, when suddenly asked, often leaving you feeling ill-prepared.

  1. The first step when handling such a question as what is your proudest accomplishment is to spend some time thinking about it. You to consider more than one major achievement over the course of your career, at least three. Here are the two main reasons for this.

    • a. Usually the next follow-up question from most seasoned interviewers would be “What is your second greatest achievement?”
    • Secondly, most seasoned interviewers will ask you a comparison question to compare your life’s achievements, so you must be prepared.
  2. The second factor to bear in mind when framing your answer is, when asked about your proudest accomplishments, it can be both personal and professional achievements. Unless specified by the interviewer what kind of achievement it is, frame your answer in such a way that it covers both sides.
    But do not go overboard with personal achievements such as marriage, children or such similar topics. Frame your answer to convince your interviewer that you have a great personality and you are the best fit for the applied job.
  3. Ensure to phrase your accomplishments in ways that are evident to the employer that you can be a great asset to the company. Avoid unwanted and unnecessary details.
  4. By all means, avoid using clichéd answers and try to define an achievement that is special and specific to you because if they’re seasoned interviewers then they most likely have heard so many cliched answers and that might affect your chances. The more detailed you are, the better it is for the interviewer to get an idea about it.
  5. Frame your answer to highlight your competitive advantage and at the same time, do not overly brag about yourself as this can create a wrong impression to the employer and you may be classified as an egoist/narcissist person.
  6. Frame your answer to be relevant to the position you are applying for, connecting the dots, while proving to the employer that you are fit for the job. Try to be as presentable as possible.
  7. Also, try to consider this as a great opportunity to discuss various other talents that you haven’t been able to mention in the interview. Try to point out all achievements you have attained when you were in school, clubs, former companies, and so on.
  8. Lastly do not memorize all your accomplishments, try as much as possible to be familiar with them. Listing them down before your big interview will help a lot in discussing it during the interview.

If you take all these into consideration while framing your answer and answer using the S.T.A.R method, there’s no doubt in my mind you’d ace the interview.
Good luck on your big interview.