Asking job candidates to describe themselves (or more specifically, to describe themselves in one word) is a pretty common personality-based interview question without a straightforward way to answer: it depends. According to Peggy McKee at Work It Daily, the answer depends on the position’s primary function, and the necessary qualities required to get the job done. She argues,
What’s the right answer? It depends on the job. Before you answer, think about not just what you are, but what you are in relation to the job. What would be a good personality trait or quality for someone in this role? Which one of those qualities applies to you? That’s your answer. This is a strategic approach to interviewing that makes you much stronger and more effective as a candidate. This approach is the difference between saying “happy” or “creative.” Being happy is great, but being creative is essential for a lot of jobs.
Some great examples include: motivated, focused, strategic, and analytical. But just be wary, the interviewer will typically ask for a time where you demonstrated that quality so be prepared to provide some examples.