What Do Employers Really Look For?

By Brenda on November 9th, 2011


Besides a college education there are several characteristics that employers look for in their employees. The best organizations understand that people are their greatest asset, and that you can have two totally different people who both have accounting degrees. Employers look for personality and character traits they think will be a good fit for the organization. Here are the top characteristics that employers look for when hiring personnel.


1. Creativity

Creativity does not mean the ability to paint a picture or write a poem. In terms of the business world, creativity means innovative thinking that solves problems and develops strategies. There are certain people that have the ability to come up with solutions to problems where others fail. A survey of Fortune 500 executives found that they seek innovative and creative thinkers over anything else.

2. Natural Curiosity

Curiosity is often the birth place of positive change. Employers seek people who are naturally inquisitive. That means they are wired to find out solutions to problems and will always be looking to improve the organizations and themselves. Curious people care enough to do an excellent job when some others may not.

3. Leadership

Despite the stereotype, not all leaders are a bunch of selfish individuals who just want to be the boss. In fact, the top five characteristics of great leaders as identified by leadership experts Kouzes and Posner are that great leaders:

  • Model the way by doing what they ask others to do
  • Inspire a shared vision
  • Empower others to be their best
  • Challenge the process
  • Encourage the heart

Those characteristics are certainly something that any decent CEO would want to be on their team. Leaders get things done and are not averse to taking calculated risks. They can inspire others to travel the road less traveled and know how to make smart decisions.

4. Results Oriented

There are plenty of smart and talented people who have nothing to show but good intentions. At the end of the day, employers want people who can produce tangible results because the combined the above three characteristics with action. The best employees are driven by results. They avoid communicating with hyperbole and let their actions speak for themselves. That means in your interview have specific and concreted examples of results you achieved.

5. Team work

Work is often done in a project management style. Long gone are the days when an executive worked on a project by his or herself. Things are now done in teams through collaborative effort. Employers look for people who can be a functioning and contributing part of the team.



Category: Careers and Employment