How to Answer: “How Would Your Former Coworkers Describe You?”

Do you struggle to praise yourself to others? If so, answering this question may be particularly difficult. 

But first, let’s tackle the purpose of the question. The interviewer is looking to understand what value you bring to a team through your teammates’ eyes. Are you competent and reliable? Now’s the time to show off your best skills, using other people’s words.


How To Answer

You’ll want to provide a professional context to any traits mentioned when answering this question. If your coworkers describe you as determined, explain why you earned that reputation at the office. Give color to your answer by preparing a brief story.

For example: “I’m sure if you asked my coworkers, they’d say I’m personable. In my last role, I was brought onto a consumer-facing outreach project specifically because of my ability to connect with customers quickly.”


But How Do I Know How Others Would Describe Me?

If you’re struggling to come up with some qualities, take a look at past performance reviews for positive feedback, then add an anecdote that reflects those qualities. Better yet, reach out to coworkers or friends and ask! 


What Remains To Be Said? 

Take this opportunity to highlight any qualities you haven’t yet had the chance to discuss. What’s important for the hiring manager to hear? What qualities are necessary for the job? Fill in the gaps, and make it clear that you’re the perfect candidate. 


Some Starters…

“My coworkers have often called me…”

“In my last performance review, my supervisor mentioned I was…”

“My past role required that I become…” 

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