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Describe a time when you motivated yourself to complete an assignment or task that you did not feel like doing.

1 of 30 Behavioral Interview Questions and Answers Written by Rachelle Enns

Updated July 22nd, 2018 | Rachelle is a job search expert, career coach, and headhunter
who helps everyone from students to fortune executives find success in their career.
How to Answer

Show the interviewer that you will still get the job done even when you aren't excited about the task at hand. Think about a time when there was a work-related task that you did not want to do. Perhaps the dreaded file room needed to be purged of outdated files to make room for the new.

Tell the interviewer what your task was, and explain why you were not excited about it. Be sure to tell the interviewer that even though you were not enthusiastic about the mission, you made it happen promptly knowing that it would help the organization as a whole.

Professional Answer Examples
Answer example

"I like to set rewards for myself when there are undesirable tasks at hand. For instance, a large part of what I do is review all of the resumes that come into our job portal on a weekly basis. Sometimes there will be up to 200 resumes to review. They all begin to look the same over time, so I have set a goal to look at 20 at a time, give myself a quick break, then return to the task."

Answer example

"I am sometimes handed the task of cleaning out our huge supply closet. It had become a junk room full of random things that we never use. I rarely want to do it, but I found the motivation to complete the task by focusing on how a more organized supply room would make everyone's life easier."

Answer example

"Terminating any staff member is a task that I do dread. I balance this by reminding myself that we have a fantastic new employee lined up as a replacement who will perform better and compliment the positive workplace culture I work so hard to craft."

Answer example

"I find our initial client calls to be a bit mundane. I spend these calls regurgitating their information back to them before we begin a project; however, I realize it's necessary to ensure there is zero loss of communication. I try to make these calls fun by letting my personality shine through, and throwing in fun questions now and then."

Answer example

"No one in retail likes cleaning out the dressing rooms and doing take-backs, honestly. As a supervisor, I never show that I don't like performing these particular tasks. I like to be sure to incentivize myself and my team to make these tasks fun. I will run little contests for the team such as whoever gets their section of the store perfectly organized, gets a coffee on me."

Answer example

"I do not always like filling out a CRM. I don't think any salesperson does. We like the call, the chase, the close. Taking time to pause and write out the details of our conversation, projections, and all that jazz is not something we look forward to doing because it slows us down. However, it's a necessary step in the sales process. Not only does it ultimately help that sale go better when the CRM is filled out in full detail, but also it helps inform the next sales' close rate. It's an essential tool in the sale, and even if it takes slowing down and doing a seemingly monotonous task, I understand its a job that will help me as a salesperson and the organization as a whole."

Answer example

"Report cards are never fun. I have over three hundred students, so it's an enormous task. I like to try to make them personalized since I know the parents appreciate the added effort. So, it becomes a rather large project. In any event, it has to get done, and I make sure to break the reports up by class and complete one class per day. It's not a fancy process, but it works for me. I believe the extra effort is appreciated."

Answer example

"I like to set rewards for myself when there are undesirable tasks at hand. For instance, a large part of what I do is review all electronic documents that come into our portal on a weekly basis. Sometimes there will be up to 200 documents to review. They all begin to look the same after awhile, so I have set a goal to look at 20 at a time, give myself a quick break, then return to the task."

Written by:

Heather Douglass
Heather Douglass has over 20 years of experience recruiting and hiring candidates. She has a knack for resume writing. You can find her on twitter at @heatherinidaho.
Rachelle Enns
Rachelle Enns is a job search expert, executive headhunter, career catalyst, and interview coach. Utilized by top talent from Fortune companies like Microsoft, General Electric, and Nestle, she helps professionals position themselves in today's competitive digital marketplace. Rachelle founded Renovate My Resume and Executive Resume Solutions, two companies focused on helping job seekers get their edge back. She helps everyone from new graduates looking for their first placement, to CEO's who want more out of their career. Rachelle coaches students to executives on how to master the toughest interview questions and how to handle the most bizarre interview situations; all with confidence and poise. Rachelle trains other career coaches, recruiters, and resume writers, globally. A big part of her job is also spent coaching HR professionals on how to bring the human touch back into their interview and hiring process.
Ryan Brown
Ryan Brown, is the creator of MockQuestions. He has over ten years experience creating interview questions. His website has helped over 10 million job seekers in their interview preparation.
First written on: 06/29/2018
Last modified on: 07/22/2018

More Interview Questions

View user-submitted Answers

Describe a time when you motivated yourself to complete an assignment or task that you did not feel like doing.
Classes with meat science.
I wasent feeling the best, but pushed myself to get the assignment done.
I put myself in the customers place and want to treat them as I want to be treated. Knowing that motivates me to insure customer satisfaction.
Budgeting for the next season was put upon me when the head of Fitness had to leave because his wife was having a baby. I did the job even taking some work home and submitted on time. The next season he did the entire plan.
Taking over the operationalization of VOD delivery to linear set top boxes tops the list of ongoing tasks I oversee that I am not interested in doing. That being said, I am a bit OCD when it comes to making sure things under my purview are done and done right, so once I realized there was no escape, I embraced it as a new challenge and have actually grown substantially as a result of the learnings I have gathered about linear TV
Any task I receive to do is something new, so I am open for new challenges, any task from there is impossible to do. In this situation I motivate myself doing more, learning more, be the best.
Ladders. Back stock room. Inventory scanning prep. Not my section thrown on me at last minute. It needed to be done.
I had to complete a ten page book report in college. I kept in the back of my mind end goal which was to make a good grade in course. I broke the report up in sections and completed none less than a page a day.
At the U of U and the Salvation Army, I had to clean the men's bathroom. I just called in the door to check if anybody was still in there. If there was no answer, I would just go in to clean.
The largest section in our store is the medicine isle. Everyone dreads stocking it. I always tell myself that it has to be done and I often reward myself with ice cream or a treat after work for completing. It.
Motivate myself by trying to get it done as soon as possible so I do not have to worry about it later.
I always tell myself to be open minded because I will not always get what I want so I will work hard at it and seek opinion from other people to complete the assignment.
When I had a heavy workload I had to complete all in the same day I did not want to complete the task but I was confident that I could get the job done the result was very effective and I was satisfied with my work.
Once at sales associate I was tired and sick but that day was last day and we had to sell at least 25 more sim cards. I was determined to achieve the target so motivated my self to complete the target and by the end of the day I was successful in completing it.
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