Picture this: Today’s the big day. You have finally been called for an interview for the job of your dreams. You have dressed for the part, and you walk into the room, and you have been acing the interview so far.
The interviewer now asks, “How do you prioritize your work?” Suddenly, you find yourself stuck, not knowing where to begin or even how to begin. Have you ever found yourself in a similar situation?
The reason why interviewers ask this question is that they want to know how good you are at shifting tasks and manage your overall workload. This might seem overwhelming, but there is a way you can give them the answer they want to hear.
Want to know how? Keep reading, folks!
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As mentioned before, answering this question might seem a little challenging, especially if you don’t know where to begin. However, if you have a clear idea, you can ace the interview and the job.
Here’s our secret to acing this question in 3 simple steps!
The first thing you need to talk about is how you currently keep track of your work and manage your deadlines.
So, basically, start by telling the interviewer how you organize your work and tasks for the day. You might do this by using various spreadsheets, jotting them down on your to-do lists, or even use the notepad app on your phone!
Keep in mind that there is no right or wrong answer to this question. Each person has a different way of doing this, so start to answer this question by talking about your method of organization.
In short, explain to the interviewer and give them an idea of how you think about your tasks and workload for a day and how you manage to get them done.
You may have a solid plan for the day, you may have it all sorted out. But the reality is that sometimes, you might get derailed. This is why managing your tasks according to priorities is an important quality.
Letting your interviewer know about the techniques and tactics you use to handle time crunches will give them an idea of how well you can work when you are given a few changes in tasks.
Based on your answer, this will also help them understand whether or not you are able to prioritize work and complete them on time.
The best way to sort out your priority tasks is by starting from the bottom. Move from your least important task to the most important task. Once you have your list sorted out, start working on them in order of priority. This way, you will be able to finish the high-priority work before anything else.
You can also use time sensitivity to sort out your tasks. Time-sensitivity tasks are nothing but tasks that need to be done and dusted within a certain time.
While the first two steps are the most important ones to answer the questions, adding the 3rd step will help to enhance it. By doing this, your employer will understand that you are a person who likes to plan ahead to avoid the rush in the end.
Here is an example of how you can plan out your work week in advance.
Dedicate a few minutes on a Sunday night and think about all your tasks for the week. Check your organizer (spreadsheets, to-do lists, notepad app on your phone, calendar, etc.) to see if you have any important meetings to attend that week.
Next, create a “priority list.” This is where you create a list of high-priority tasks for the week. You can also check your last week’s priority list to check off all your work.
During weekdays, spend a few minutes before bed to plan out the work for the next day. This way, you will have a clear head in the morning and start hustling right away! Starting your day without a list might leave you a little unclear. You might also get overwhelmed thinking of your day’s workload.
Anyway, it is better to be over-organized than under-organized, right?
The worst answer to the “how do you prioritize your work” question is having no answer at all. A major deal-breaker for most employees is when they find out the person is unorganized as it shows a lack of interest and passion for the job.
This applies to any job that you plan to apply for.
It is normal for you, as an interviewee, to get a little nervous. However, even in situations like this, you need to stand your ground and appear confident.
And the best way to appear confident is by preparing for the interview ahead of time. We hope this 3-step guide to answer the “how do you prioritize your work” question has helped you sort out your answers and given you an idea of how to tackle it. If you have, you can ace your interview without a doubt!