News and Insight

Resources, advice and thought leadership from our experts.

Traits of Your Next Great Hire

Does This Sound Like Your New Hire?

Anyone who’s been a part of the hiring process knows how important choosing the right person for the job can be and how long it can take to find that right fit. In some cases experience is priority number one, while for others it might be trying to discover someone with a unique niche or hard-to-find skill. Whatever the situation, there are certain traits all great hires have and all recruiters look for throughout the interview stage.

  • Strong Work Ethic – When a person is hired, usually the next steps involve training or some level of onboarding. Most of the time working on developing a strong work ethic isn’t where training or onboarding places its focus. These initial steps taken upon being hired are more about teaching the Xs and Os of the company and the position. You have to remember that the job itself isn’t the only thing benefiting from hiring someone with a strong work ethic, the whole company will also reap the rewards. For example, if you signed with the Philadelphia Phillies in the early 2000s, you would’ve been teammates with Chase Utley. The scrappy second baseman’s actions were the definition of what it means to have a strong work ethic. He would sprint out of the batter’s box even if the play ended in an out and would run hard to make a web gem in the field every time. As a teammate, watching this type of work ethic on display becomes contagious and makes the team (or organization) better in the end.
  • Continuous Learner Mentality – Who wants an employee that is content with being stagnant? If you hire someone with a continuous learner mentality you can be confident in knowing that this person will play an important role in growing your business. When an employee’s drive includes wanting to be better at what they do, you have yourself a dedicated professional whose knowledge will make your business better. Continuous learning is defined in this article as the practices an individual carries out daily in order to continue increasing knowledge. If you are someone hiring who isn’t turned on by hearing this about a candidate, check your pulse.
  • Positive Attitude – This is one of those traits that someone either has or doesn’t. We all experience bad days every now and then, but even on those days the optimist finds something positive to hang on to and grow from. There have been many discussions within hiring circles about prioritizing attitude over skills in the interview process or vice versa. What about the idea of hiring for attitude and training for skill? If you have someone in-house with a positive attitude, 9 times out of 10 it would be easier for you in the onboarding process to provide training to build the skills needed for the job, not to build the positivity needed for the company.
  • Dependable – The friend you can call at 2:00am to bail you out of jail… well, that’s not exactly what dependability in the workplace is, but you get the idea. Having an employee who you can count on to follow through on their commitments and do what they say they are going to do is clutch for any business. As a manager, knowing that you will have a certain project completed by deadline can sometimes make or break a business deal, and in some cases your sanity. This is the employee who works the job, not the hours. Who doesn’t want that within their organization?
  • Loyalty – As millennials account for the majority of the job market, it makes sense for companies to provide an environment where this generation would want to stay. And contrary to popular belief, millennials are actually very loyal, just not loyal to a company as much as their bosses. So to the bosses out there, listen up because if you can earn the loyalty and respect of this generation, you will have the type of employee that will go to bat for you and work towards bringing your company success.
  • Results Oriented – At the end of the day, businesses are in business to be successful and make money. You need to have employees who are conscious and respectful of the goals they need to achieve, and the overall impact on the bottom line. Sometimes “results oriented” is classified mostly in a role like sales, but that’s not necessarily the case. Every job out there has certain requirements that need to be met no matter the specialty. As a hiring manager, you need to bring someone on who not only understands what these requirements are, but has the self-motivation to achieve them.

Take a look around your organization. Do your employees and new hires have these traits? Are there other traits you think are essential to look for during the hiring process? Share your thoughts.