Job Interview Question: Are You Lucky?

How to Respond to Interview Questions About Luck

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Sometimes, during an interview, an employer will surprise you with an unusual question, like, "Do you consider yourself to be lucky?" Although the question sounds strange, it's one that recruiters may use to assess whether you have an optimistic or pessimistic view of the world.

Employers generally want to avoid candidates who have a sulking, "woe is me" attitude. You'll need to demonstrate that you aren't easily defeated by difficult circumstances.


How to Answer

You want to demonstrate a balanced but optimistic attitude in your answer. You can begin by referencing some reasons why you have been fortunate, like having a strong family background, great mentors, inspiring bosses, or a solid education at an outstanding school.  Good fortune of this kind points to assets that will ultimately serve you well in your job.

However, you also want to avoid attributing your successes to mere “luck.” Focus on a quality or skill you have that has brought you success. In this way, you are demonstrating that you make your own luck, rather than waiting for good things to come to you. This kind of answer will showcase some of your strengths as well as your positive attitude.

You can also note how you have met and overcome some challenges or adversity, such as a particularly difficult project, or even a past employer going out of business.

Although you should explain how you rebounded or coped with the challenge, make sure you convey that it is no longer a distraction or drain on your energy and has instead resulted in a strong sense of confidence and resilience.

Sample Answers

  • I am lucky in that I have been able to survive difficult times due to my tenacity and strong work ethic. For example, when my former company was considering shutting down our branch, I worked relentlessly with my colleagues to increase our sales by over 15%, avoiding a shutdown.
  • I consider myself extremely lucky in that I was given a remarkable education at XYZ University. I have worked hard to take full advantage of that education, participating in multiple internships and extracurricular in which I developed the skills and leadership qualities that make me the strong project manager I am today.

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