It is amazing how uninspiring interviewers can be. And how unoriginal. But in something like 28% of interviews this question will still be asked.

Perhaps an appropriate answer might be “The ability to answer dull, boring and uninspired questions like this with great enthusiasm”. In reality, however, what the interviewer is expecting you to say is that you are very good at your job, very focused on your career, you hit every target, you take your job seriously or some other cliché.

But just like any other interview question, if you prepare thoroughly you should expect this. Work out genuinely what your greatest strength is at work (because having a golf handicap of two or playing county tennis is not likely to endear you to most franchise directors or general managers who probably expect you to live for work not for play).

So if you have never missed a target for the past four years, or if you have inspired your team to double their turnover or focused your team on customer satisfaction so that they are now no longer bottom of the country but in the top 10%, any of those might be good starting points. Just note the basic principle, as in all interviews, that when you answer you should be specific, preferably with something measurable, and almost certainly something that is seen as affecting the bottom line.

Expect the worst, plan for the best. Or rather, expect the worst questions and plan for the best answers.

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