“What is your hidden talent?” asks the interviewer.
Although most job interviews consist of fundamental questions about your qualifications, experience, and skills, certain inquiries may appear strange or unrelated to the role. One such question is, “What is your hidden talent?” or “Do you have a hidden talent?” To respond effectively, you must first understand the potential motivations behind such a question and how to prepare for it. In this piece, we will explain why an interviewer may ask you about your hidden talent, go over the steps you may take to prepare your answer, and provide some examples to help you.
Why do employers want to know about your hidden talents?
The reason an employer asks you about your hidden talent will most likely vary depending on the interviewer’s aims. Some common reasons for asking this question include:
To start the debate,
Interviewers frequently use a funny question or sequence of questions as an icebreaker. A question like “Do you have a hidden talent?” might be an excellent icebreaker because there are no right or wrong answers and you already know the answer. The question gets you talking and relaxes you, laying the groundwork for more expansive, honest responses later in the interview.
to find your interests
One of the purposes of a job interview is to learn more about the candidate. This applies to both their professional ability and their personal interests. Information regarding a person’s abilities can provide insight into what they do outside of work. These activities are most likely their hobbies, and someone with active interests is more likely to be passionate about anything, implying that they have a natural drive that they may use at work.
to better understand your personality
Personality is an important factor for the interviewer to examine because the traits that comprise a candidate’s distinct character can influence the quality of their interactions with colleagues and, as a result, workplace morale. Talents frequently reveal parts of a person’s personality, such as whether they are laid-back, disciplined, imaginative, or team-oriented. A candidate who claims to be outstanding at baking because they enjoy sharing delicacies with others, for example, may have the kind of personality that boosts people’s spirits and attracts them together.
Recognizing your own strengths
People frequently fail to recognize how their interests and talents might be transformed into professional advantages. A person skilled in a team sport, for example, may notice their own athletic ability but fail to perceive that this ability suggests the presence of other workplace attributes. Communication is critical for successful business team operations as well as for strong team performance on the field or court. Analytical thinking is also vital in these disciplines, as is the ongoing drive to improve.
In some cases, a person’s primary abilities indicate to their professional and personal goals. Toasting, the act of making brief words in honor of a specific person at a specific event, is one example of such a skill. People who want to cultivate this talent typically exhibit confidence and leadership qualities, which may suggest a desire to advance in their employment.
How would you answer the inquiry, “What is your hidden talent?”
Understanding the probable causes of questions about hidden skills enables you to create an effective response by taking advantage of the opportunity to promote your best qualities. Follow these steps to prepare for the query and develop your response:
1. Think about your strengths.
You can prepare for this question by first examining your strengths in the days leading up to your interview. A skill is something you can perform well, especially something that appears to happen naturally. It might be grand and ostentatious, or it can be small and private. Take some time to evaluate yourself and develop a list of everything you do that could be considered a talent. You can ask your close friends and family members what they think your top abilities are and include their suggestions on your list if you want.
2. Think about your advantages.
A successful answer to the question “What is your hidden talent?” shows the interviewer that you have skills that can benefit the organization. Keeping this in mind, create a second list of attributes you wish to convey to the interviewer. You can underline the traits you highlighted in your resume and cover letter here, but you should also consider new ones. Discussing previously unmentioned skills throughout your interview may stimulate the interviewer’s interest and solidify your position in their mind.
3. Establish links between your talents and your strengths.
After you’ve identified your skills and strengths, you can start exploring for places where they overlap. The idea is to connect these dots throughout the interview so that the interviewer identifies your strengths. The connections between your abilities and strengths may not be clear at first, so think carefully and analyze your lists to find them. Consider thinking beyond the box. While juggling isn’t necessarily an indicator of multitasking ability, it can show that you’re capable of handling multiple responsibilities at once.
4. Compose a tale.
Tell a story about how your talent links to your strengths to convey the message associated with it. In a couple of ways, framing your response in this way is advantageous. It produces a more remembered reaction, as well as a more fleshed-out idea that is more likely to be well received than a brief response. Discussing how you use your hidden gift is one way to create a story around it. A talented singer, for example, may regularly perform at open mics or karaoke—activities that demonstrate an openness to public speaking, which is a useful professional attribute.
Remember that both the act of implementing your gift and the effort required to study it can demonstrate your characteristics. Learning to ride a unicycle, for example, will require a substantial amount of trial and error, perseverance, and tenacity. If that’s your skill, you can tell your story about how you learned it rather than how you applied it.
Answers to “What is your secret talent?”
Consider the following two examples of answers to the question “What is your secret talent?” to assist you in developing your own:
In this example, the interviewee emphasizes the act of displaying their talent in order to demonstrate positive personal qualities:
“My hidden gift is knitting. I began knitting when I was seven years old. I asked my grandmother, who was crocheting something, most likely a sweater for me or my brother, how she did it. The following weekend, she began educating me. Knitting is something I enjoy doing since it requires precision and patience. The satisfaction comes slowly, but it arrives when you complete a task. It also entails a lot of undoing and restarting. That’s something I respect because it reminds me that doing something well often necessitates repeating it.”
Exemplification No. 2
This interviewee emphasizes the amount of time and effort needed to achieve their skill:
“Many people are surprised to learn that I am an accomplished unicyclist. I can ride a unicycle in the same way that most people ride bicycles. It wasn’t always easy, though. I started learning after seeing someone riding one on campus. He let me try, and I kept sliding onto my side. But there was something that kept me coming back, so I tracked him down and asked him to teach me how to ride.
We must have spent eight hours that day and another eight hours the next day trying to teach me. I was finally able to hold my balance after that. After a week of regular practice, I was able to ride my bike throughout campus. Since then, I’ve bought my own unicycle and regularly ride it around the neighborhood.”