Qualification. What a strange word. Are we really ever qualified for something in life, or, on the contrary, are we always qualified, though we lack formal education and those other things? The question is almost philosophical, but I am sure you do not come here to read philosophy :). You want to know what the hiring managers want to hear from you, and I will try my best to tell you, regardless of whether you lack formal education and previous working experience, or, on the contrary, have 20 years of experience under your belt. So, what do they want to hear from you?

Basically your goal is to convince them that you are qualified for the job you are applying for, doesn’t matter whether or not you have any previous experience in the field. What I try to say here that you can say that you are a qualified as cook (an example), even if you’ve never worked in a restaurant before. If you have three children and enjoy trying new recipes and get good feedback on your cooking, no reason why you couldn’t say so! Or you can say that your qualification is a salesman, even if you’ve never worked in sales. But perhaps you ran your own small business or have a freelancing career, and in such a case you’ve been selling your skills to your clients, over an extended period. What I try to say here is that doesn’t matter what your formal qualification is, you can always make it look at a bit better, choosing right words to describe it.

Let’s have a look at 7 sample answers now. I tried to include on my list answers for different job fields and life situations. Obviously the list of possible qualifications and jobs is almost endless, but I hope that after reading the 7 answers you’ll have a good idea about what to say, to make the right impression on the hiring managers. Enjoy!


7 sample answers to “What is your qualification?” interview question

  1. My qualification is a construction worker. I’ve been working on building construction for three years, and believe that I have acquired a variety of skills. What’s more, I believe my experience will help me in other fields too, and that I do not have to limit myself to construction for the rest of my life. I am motivated, hard working and in a great shape, and hope you will give me a chance to prove my words, even though I may lack previous experience in this job field.
  2. I am a social worker when we speak about formal education and qualification. But just like many other people in this field, I have experienced a burnout and am looking for something different. Having said that, you can be sure my people skills are excellent and that I won’t struggle to learn the ins and outs of HR quickly, and deliver in my new job.
  3. I have no qualification so far. But I believe everyone has to start somewhere, and with the right motivation and attitude, you can learn any job, regardless of your qualification. Anyway, I like to read, I have read dozens of books on marketing, and have done my research. Of course, one cannot learn everything in the books, but I believe that in spite of my lack of formal qualification, I will handle this job, and achieve exceptional results.
  4. I am a gardener. As simple as that. Have studied gardening for four years, and have worked as a private gardener for a few houses in my neighborhood. Now I am looking for the job since in my present situation (family and stuff), I cannot really rely on my freelancing income only. I have brought with me some photos of my work, and you can look at them to see what I can do, and that I am really qualified in this field.
  5. My qualification is a qualification of a manager. I have managed people and processes for years, starting from the bottom, building my name, getting almost on the top. Of course, I have a degree from business management and stuff, but believe my experience is much more important in this case. The results I achieved with my previous employers, the references I got, everything.
  6. To be honest, until now I’ve been a jack of all trades. Done a bit of translating, Spanish teaching, freelancing for a tour agency, piano playing, you name it… One can say that I’ve done everything and nothing at the same time. But now I want to change it finally, and that’s why I am looking for a full time job with you. One thing I want to assure you about though is that in all these occupations and hobbies, I always tried my best and gave my heart to it, and I want to maintain the same attitude in the job.
  7. My qualification is an English teacher. I’ve never studied it, but I’ve been teaching abroad for many years, and over the years mastered different teaching methods and also learned how to deal with all sorts of students, with all sorts of personalities. I believe that now I am ready to teach in your institute, and do my best for your students.

So that’s it. I hope that you enjoyed the answers, and have now at least an idea about how to deal with this seemingly simple but at times tricky interview question. If you’re still not sure, I recommend you checking out sample answers to similar interview questions:

Matthew Chulaw
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