The video below shows some bad answers to the question “What are your weaknesses?” What makes the answers bad?

Now watch the same bad answers, but followed by good versions. What language techniques does the interviewee use to sound more positive?

Fill in the gaps below from memory, then listen and check

Psychologically BAD Weakness Psychologically GOOD Weakness
My English is bad / not good.My English is good, but I think it 1) _____ be better.

My English is good, but I think it could be 2) _ _____better

My English is good but it is 3) ___ __ good ___ it _____ be
I always have difficulty talking on the phone in English4)_________ I have a bit of difficulty communicating in English on the phone

, 5)________ if the other person has a very strong accent

I 6)___ always clarify the ideas

It 7)_____ be nice if it ____ a little bit easier
My communication skills are really badMy communication skills, 8)_____ good, could be a bit better I think.

It would be nice if my communication skills were a little bit better.

I think I need to 9)_____ my communication skills a bit 10)_____.
It’s always a problem for me to talk to other team membersI 11) ____ _________ had a problem communicating with a team member,

12)____ it’s something I’ve 13)_____ working _____

It’s something I’m getting better 14) ____

I 15)____ ____ I need to improve it a bit more
I’m not punctualAlthough I’m 16)____ a punctual person, occasionally I 17)____ be a little bit late 18) _____ ___ family commitments or things like bad traffic.

Although there’s 19)____ _____ a problem because of this, I think that it is something that could be improved a little bit.
I’m not patient / I’m really impatientFor me it’s 20)____ ____ important to meet targets and to meet 21)______, and I push myself a lot to achieve these 22) ____.

Occasionally, as a result, I 23)___ be a little bit impatient with colleagues.

24)________ , this is something I’ve been working on, and I’ve improved.

It’s just that I think 25)___ ____ _____ a little bit more improvement.

And then I’ll be quite happy.

Answers below:

Psychologically BAD Weakness Psychologically GOOD Weakness
My English is bad / not good.My English is good, but I think it could be better.

My English is good, but I think it could be a bit better

My English is good but it is not as good as it could be
I always have difficulty talking on the phone in EnglishSometimes I have a bit of difficulty communicating in English on the phone

, particularly if the other person has a very strong accent

I do always clarify the ideas

It would be nice if it was a little bit easier
My communication skills are really badMy communication skills, although good, could be a bit better I think.

It would be nice if my communication skills were a little bit better.

I think I need to hone my communication skills a bit more.
It’s always a problem for me to talk to other team membersI have occasionally had a problem communicating with a team member,

But it’s something I’ve been working on

It’s something I’m getting better at

I just feel I need to improve it a bit more
I’m not punctualAlthough I’m quite a punctual person, occasionally I might be a little bit late because of family commitments or things like bad traffic.

Although there’s never been a problem because of this, I think that it is something that could be improved a little bit.
I’m not patient / I’m really impatientFor me it’s always been important to meet targets and to meet deadlines, and I push myself a lot to achieve these goals.

Occasionally, as a result, I can be a little bit impatient with colleagues.

However, this is something I’ve been working on, and I’ve improved.

It’s just that I think it does need a little bit more improvement.

And then I’ll be quite happy.