Everyone is looking for those cliché traits to describe their ideal candidates (i.e. go-getter mentality). They’re nothing special and the result is a recipe for average candidates. Don’t work off of the same wish list as every company. Instead, try to look for these traits in your candidates. And if you’re a job seeker, keep these traits in mind!
1. Effective Listening Skills
It’s an overlooked and very important skill when working with clients and colleagues. Being a good listener means you’re a relationship builder and put the interest of others first. If someone interrupts or talks over others in an interview, then they will do that in other situations outside of the interview.
Intellectual curiosity isn’t about being smart. It’s about wanting to learn and grow, looking for new challenges, and bettering the way they get things done. These are the people you want in your company as they are going to challenge the norm and keep your company a step ahead of the competition. Look for someone open and excited rather than someone who come to the interview “already knowing everything.”
3. A Positive Sense of Humor
Positivity and a sense of humor is just for contributing to a fun work environment and employee bonding purposes. It’s also a sign of emotional intelligence and strong interpersonal skills. Being able to look on the bright side is a valuable skill in any employee.
4. A Personal Life
Tempting as it may be to hire the highly dedicated employee, at some point you’ll soon to find out that there’s only so much that they can contribute without enjoying life outside of the workplace. Without a proper work-life balance, employees run the risk of becoming one dimensional.
5. Candor (Honest, Direct, and Up-Front)
When you ask your questions during the interview, pay close attention to how they respond. If they don’t answer the question directly, then they might not have enough information to answer it properly which means they didn’t prepare or they are trying to be polite, which means they aren’t honest. If they can be truth in their first meeting with you, then you can safely expect them to be honest with you and your colleagues. You don’t want nodding robots on your staff, so hire individuals with their own thoughts and opinions.
You want people on your staff who aren’t afraid to be themselves. Not only will it make the workplace much more interesting, but it will help your team be more creative. If they are interacting with your clients, you what them to have a personality.
7. Food For Thought
A very unusual trait to look for is a food lover. Yeah, you read that correctly! People with a healthy appreciation for food will know all of the good restaurants in town and if your company goes out for lunch or dinner meetings, you’ll want a person like this. If you’re looking for a sales person, this is an important quality to look for. In sales, you’re bound to treat clients or potential clients to lunch/dinner, so this is where this trait becomes important.
8. Follow-Up (Post-Interview)
Not every candidate is going to follow up with a thank you or touch back during the decision-making process. Those that do demonstrate persistence, interest, and attention to detail.