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Tricky interview question: How good are you?

The following took place during an interview for a graduate technology position at a global bank…

What the interviewer said

It was the final interview round and I had answered a lot of the technical questions quite well. I think perhaps the lead interviewer sensed that I was becoming too confident and he tried to throw a curve ball by saying at the very end of the interview: “Tell us how good you are.”

The candidate’s reply

I was put onto the back foot for a moment and answered “where do I start?”. It got a laugh from all three interviewers and seemed to show that I had a sense of humour. I got the job

How he would have responded in hindsight

It was a throw-away remark to see how I coped with something unorthodox. I answered with humour, and in hindsight I would do so again, possibly with exactly the same response. Every time I interview someone for a job now I think about asking the same question but strangely never do.

How would YOU have answered?

Use the comments box below to suggest a better response to the interview question above.

Comments (5)

  1. better wld have been to follow up with a serious answer pointing on yr strengths. this is really just a variation on the strength and weaknesses question

  2. I think that is not your main reason for getting the job. Rather it was because your good performance in answering the teachnicals and makes it. ( because : If I am the boss, I would look for someone whom knows the technical well ; whether he is able to answer tricky question is not so important UNLESS the job is a PR, sales or similar that requires meeting with different peoples)

  3. Depending on how the interviewer looks on the other side: i would go that is not the kind of question you expected, but having said that, i can go into greater details of ‘how good am i’ bcs that is a question i have courted from my wife/ gf all the time……..but i am as good as my client thinks, u can never judge how good you are, it is always how my clients rate and given the success i have had over the years, I would on the back of client feedback and to some extent peer feedback, I would rate myself very good without loosing sight on trying to improve and be better….

  4. @AA, I hope your wife/gf says you are good!


  5. that’s a very good question but for me if ever ask “how good i am” my answer would be “hire me and you’ll see” with a smile hehehehehe…you can never rate your goodness its bias on you side so might as well let them hire you and for them to rate your goodness :)

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