Today’s interview question of the day is another behavioral question. I have been really busy with school so I will not be able to do 1 question a day so my goal for this topic will be maybe 2 a week. I hope you guys understand. Anyway enough with the excuses, here is today’s question:
Have you ever made a mistake? How did you handle it?
This question is a great way to tell your interviewee about your experiences, I would throw in a mistake that is relevant to their field of work. During one of my interviews, this question was bought up to me from the panel and this was how I answered the question.
Answer: “At my current work place I have made many mistakes but one of the most eye opening mistake occurred when my project manager looked at the plan and profile plans I had drawn on Civil 3D and made this comment, ‘what is this? Let’s use our heads’ This was a huge mistake I had made on the plans, I had drew a gate out of proportion and it was way out in the middle of the road. There was no way to refute my mistake because I was definitely wrong. There was no excuse for me that I had rushed that day and did not prioritize my time correctly. Not only was a mistake on attention to detail but time management. This event showed me that I was not paying attention to details as much as I should have before submitting my plans for QC. From there I learned my lesson, I made sure I looked at every plan I submitted and I made sure I had time to check my own plans before submitting to my project manager. This mistake, taught me to be detail oriented and time management. Not only do I check my plans now but I now edit and proofread all my writings but submissions also. At the time I was embarrassed to have gotten this comment but not long after that I understand the reason for such a red line and from just that red-line I learned 2 of the most important skills in the workforce. I’m now really thankful for my project manager to have taught me these valuable lessons.”
I tried to incorporate my experiences in CAD, I had the chance to talk a bit about my experiences in Civil 3D and that I have worked on plan and profile plans. It’s always good to show them specific work that you’ve participated in. I’m not a big fan of buzz words but I think talking about CAD experience is really good when you’re applying for an entry position in Civil Engineering. Then in the end I tossed in the part where I really value my project manager and I really appreciate him for teaching me the lesson. It shows that I am an understanding person and I do not create tension when I’m embarrassed. I can take on critical comments and learn from it. It’s really valuable to have a person that is able to take critiques in any field and engineering is one of the biggest in my opinion when it comes to being a people person. From just one question, I was able to bring out 3 great skills about myself, I know how to manage my time, be detail oriented and I can take on critiques. I hoped this answer created a framework/example to help you build your own answer to this popular question. Let me know how else I can improve on my answer.