What is a big mistake you’ve made in your career, and what did you learn from it?

Why They Ask: Think this question only exists to make you feel bad about yourself? I promise, there’s more to it than that.

There’s nothing more admirable than someone who can own their slip-ups — even when they’re embarrassing. And, more than that, employers really want to hire people who can not only be accountable for their mistakes, but translate them into constant growth and improvement.
How to Answer: Similarly to highlighting your own weaknesses, it feels unnatural to share things that make you look like less than a flawless candidate. But, this is another scenario where you want to be honest and forthright — without making yourself look too sloppy, of course. You’ll need to touch on the mistake you made in order to provide context for the interviewer. However, spend the bulk of your answer focusing on the steps you took after that blunder in order to avoid it in the future and become even better.

What This Looks Like:
“Early on in my career, I didn’t set up the appropriate link tracking for this large sales email that we sent out — which made it really difficult for us to measure and monitor the sales that email generated. It definitely taught me the importance of double-checking everything. I even established a set workflow for myself that includes a couple of final checks. I never made that same mistake again.”