When pitching yourself for a new job position, you may face questions about your qualifications and prior experiences. However, interviewers are keen to gain deeper insights into your values and work ethic through queries like “Tell me about the most significant accomplishment with your company.”
These questions can catch you off guard if you’re not well-prepared. So, how do you craft an inclusive and impressive response? I’ve got you covered with the top 6 examples that impressed me the most while working with employees at The Future World Of Work.
In this article:
Why Do Recruiters Ask You About Your Greatest Professional Achievement?
Every question recruiters ask you is a step closer to your personal values and work ethic. And the inquiry about your biggest accomplishment is no exception.
- Assess your personal skills, abilities, and personalities: The journey from when you set your goal to when you achieve it reflects your skillset, dedication to work, and discipline to stay on track from beginning to end.
How you tell your story can give interviewers an overview of your interpersonal skills, like leadership, teamwork, communication, etc. Do you focus on the process or the result? Will you give credit to the entire team’s mutual effort or only highlight your contribution? They all speak volumes about your personality.
- Evaluate your problem-solving skills and the ability to work in a demanding, high-pressure environment: An accomplishment sometimes can not be measured by numbers or tangible outcomes. It might be as simple as how you work around a dilemma, unblock bottlenecks, learn, and grow from it.
Your approach to the problem will tell recruiters about your adaptability and problem-solving skills. They can also assess your ability to work and develop in a demanding, high-pressure environment.
- Gauge if you are a good fit in the company culture: The way you describe your achievement can reveal your personality and communication style. Are you enthusiastic and team-oriented? Or are you more analytical and detail-focused? Recruiters want to assess whether you’ll mesh well with the company culture.
5 Experts’ Tips To Answer This Question
Link To The Role You Are Applying For
Staying relevant in your answer is crucial. Having interviewed thousands of candidates throughout my career, I believe other recruiters also expect a relevant accomplishment tied to the position you’re applying for.
This way, we can better assess your ability and skill set, clarifying if you can fit into that vacancy. It is also your chance to showcase your strengths and values, demonstrating how you can contribute to the company’s growth.
For example, if you seek a position in a customer service team, mentioning a success related to your communication skills will be of great help. Regardless, prove to the HR manager that you can excel in that role with your background.
Mention Professional Accomplishments, Not Personal
Winning a lottery, passing your driving test, or raising a good child – recruiters aren’t interested in your personal matters. You want to bring up something that has a meaningful impact on your career.
Focusing on your professional achievements reveals your dedication and interest in your work, and you will strive to do the same, if not better, in the next position. If you lack career-related success, avoiding prolonged discussions about a personal accomplishment is advisable. Instead, mention your academic success, like scholarship or GPA.
Keep It Concise And Highlight Your Strengths And Skills
A typical interview might take from 30 minutes to 1 hour, so there is no time to linger on this question. You have to seize the chance to showcase your strengths through your short and sweet story. Just make sure your response centers around your approach to reach the goal and the achieved results.
Apply The STAR Technique
The STAR method also guides you through not only this inquiry but also tough questions in an interview. Let me break it down for you:
- S – Situation: You need to provide a context for your story, like your role in the previous company.
- T – Task: This is when you describe the challenge you faced; remember to go straight to the point.
- A – Action: Here comes the most important part, where you have to tell the interviewer how you overcame the obstacle and what skills you applied.
- R – Result: Last but not least is the outcome. Now, you need to mention the achievement or lesson for that situation. What did you learn, and why is it your biggest success?
Be Polite And Honest
After years of working in the labor field, I want to remind you that badmouthing your previous company, manager, or colleagues is the last thing you want to do in a job interview. You don’t want to mention how you play dirty tricks on your co-workers to get promoted. Trying to be funny with your interview answer is also a no-go.
Furthermore, honesty is the best policy. I value an honest candidate with less experience more than a skilled one with an inflated resume.
6 Examples To Answer What Achievements You Are Most Proud Of
If You Have No Prior Experience
Having no prior experience doesn’t mean that you can’t nail this common interview question. Your academic success, like scholarships or GPA, can compensate for that lack. Make sure to describe the effort you invested in achieving such a glorious academic outcome.
Until now, what I’m most proud of is to graduate with a GPA of 3.84 – among the top 20 students of [your university’s name]. Not born with a gifted talent or a genius mind, I always had to invest more time and effort to catch up with my peers in my first year at university.
However, my thirst for knowledge has fueled my motivation, and I decided to befriend other good students and learn from them a lot. There were times when I dedicated almost the whole week to the library just to prepare for my presentation. My effort finally paid off with an excellent GPA, which was not merely a number but a testimonial of my dedication and consistency.
If You’ve Already Have Some Background
If you’ve just entered the labor market for a while, there might not be impactful accomplishments in your previous role. However, you can turn this into a strength by emphasizing a specific project with positive results. In this case, you can mention a specific project with a positive result that you have participated in.
In my previous role as a seller at a plant nursery, I’ve proudly contributed to the 20% increase in sales for the store. Working in a small business, I had to juggle between selling at the physical store and managing the Facebook page to run ads.
Realizing the trend of short videos on TikTok, I decided to make short clips featuring each plant in the nursery and its story and uploaded them on Facebook Reels. The number of sales surged within just 2 weeks after that. That was when I realized the power of trends in marketing and sales.
For A Management Or Executive Role
A managerial position calls for more than just a stellar CV. You need to prove your communication and time management skills, leadership, and a wealth of experience in the field. HR managers will likely look for someone who can lead a team and reap positive results together.
My biggest achievement during my career was when I led an 11-member marketing team for almost 4 years. Initially, I observed a lack of communication among team members, particularly between designers and content writers. I asked the whole team to sit down and talk about their dissatisfactions and expectations to understand each other better.
I explained to everyone the importance of good relationships and effective mutual communication when working as a team, and everyone seemed to realize the root cause of productivity. From then on, each member knew how to fit into the team, and we could work together for more than 3 years with increased morale.
When You Want To Work As A Teacher
As a teacher, you don’t have to tie your answer to grades, awards, or other academic achievements. A story revolving around student growth and impact might be enough to leave a lasting impression on the recruiter.
What I’m most proud of during my 5 years of teaching is to help an autistic student become an integral part of the class. At first, he was so shy and barely spitting a word. But with my dedication and commitment to being a good teacher, I never let anyone in my class fall behind.
Playing and talking to him during break times, persuading him to take part in an outdoor camp with the class, and teaching him one-on-one at the library, I tried my best to be a friend, not a teacher. And after a year, he became more open and could have the very first friends. I believe teaching is not only about knowledge but also about humanity.
Mention Your Academic Achievement
Academic achievements are not limited to GPA or grades. The time when you receive a scholarship or take part in a foreign exchange program is also great material.
As a student of hotel management, my proudest moment is to join an exchange program to Switzerland – one of the best countries to study hospitality. I’d heard of this program since I was a freshman, so I researched it to understand all the requirements. In my last year, I finally applied for that program.
After 2 interviews, I was accepted as a qualified candidate for a 6-month program. That was a golden opportunity to be immersed in Switzerland’s esteemed hospitality. Returning to my home country, I was armed with hands-on experience and world-class services that work wonders for my future job.
What If You Want To Mention Personal Milestones?
I’ve shared earlier that personal matters won’t work for this common job interview question. However, suppose you want to tell your own story; try to mention something transferable to your role, focusing on personal growth and milestones.
What I’m most proud of myself is to become a street musician besides being a nurse. While my primary life goal is to pursue nursing, I’ve always had a passion for music.
Now, I can manage my time to work as a responsible full-time nurse while performing on the streets whenever I have free time. I usually sing to my patients, believing that my music can somehow ease their pain a bit.
See more interview tips:
- How To Write A Follow-Up Email After Interview
- 3 Examples For Thank-You Email After Interview
- 8 Examples of Challenges You Have Overcome At Work
- 6 sample answers of accomplishments at work
- 5 Examples of Problem-Solving in The Workplace
- How To Ask for Feedback After Job Rejection
- How to Explain The Reason for Leaving a Job on Applications
For Interview Question:
Preparing some accomplishment examples will help you ace your interview confidently. Regardless of your answer, it’s recommended that you focus on the professional achievements that link to the position you are eyeing. That’s your chance to persuade the interviewer that you are a good fit in their company.