What Should You Look for in the People You Hire?

Most leaders I’ve met want to build a high-performance organization. Instinctively, they know that this requires great people. But few of them have ever taken the time to define exactly what they are looking for when it comes to the ideal candidate.

A Super Hero Candidate - Photo courtesy of ©iStockphoto.com/emyerson, Image #1785848

Photo courtesy of ©iStockphoto.com/emyerson

Good leaders begin the recruiting process with a written job description. This generally includes the required educational experience and technical skills. But great leaders need to do more than this. They must take a step back and look at the baseline qualities of the candidate.

They should ask,

  • What kind of prospective employees are we trying to attract to our organization?
  • What kind of people will it take to get the results we want and others expect?
  • What kind of people do we want to surround ourselves with?
  • What kind of people will contribute to the culture we are trying to build?

“Warm bodies” are obviously not enough. “Better-than-average” won’t get you there either. Even “really good people” are insufficient. You need higher standards if you are going to achieve your mission.

As I have thought about this, I have reduced these high standards to a sort of formula: “H3S.”

I want to fill my company with people who are humble, honest, hungry, and smart. The “h” in the word “high” represents the first three attributes. The “s” in the word “standards” represents the last attribute. All are equally important, but let me expound on each of them separately.

For simplicity sake, I’m going to use the masculine pronoun below, but it should be understood that the ideal candidate may, of course, be either a man or a woman. Gender is irrelevant.

Humble

A humble person has a good sense of himself. He doesn’t think more highly of himself than he should (pride), nor lower of himself than he ought (poor self-esteem). He is sober-minded, having a realistic grip on his strengths and weaknesses.

He does not exhibit self-ambition. He might be ambitious for the cause, for the company, or for the team, but he is not ambitious for himself. He isn’t overly-concerned about his title, his status, or his position relative to others.

In conversation, he assumes the posture of a learner. He doesn’t pretend that he knows it all or even more than he does. It would certainly never cross his mind to assume that he is the “smartest person in the room.”

He respects other points of view and asks questions to make sure that he understands the other position before criticizing it. He makes other people feel smart and competent.

He is other-centered, no matter who the other person is. He acknowledges “the little people,” those that are easily overlooked by everyone else. He values them and treats them as peers.

Whenever I hire an executive, I always like to take him or her to dinner. I am always interested to see how he treats the hostess, the waiters, and even the busboys. Is he curt? Is he demanding or brusque? Does he treat them with dignity? Is he appreciative? Does he even notice them?

I am always leery of people who “suck-up” to people they want something from and disrespect everyone else. There’s no explaining it away. This is a character flaw. I don’t want someone like this working in my organization. I have no patience for it.

A humble person is open to correction and not defensive. He is quick to admit mistakes and apologize. He knows how to say, “I am sorry. What I did was wrong. Will you please forgive me?” Everyone makes mistakes. The truly humble know how to make it right. Usually, they have had plenty of practice.

He is conscious of the contributions others have made to his life, his projects, and his career. He is quick to give credit to them and express sincere gratitude. Conversely, when others compliment him, he offers a simple “thank you,” without making a big fuss about it.

Finally, he does not consider certain jobs “beneath him.” He sees what needs to be done, pitches in, and is just happy to be part of the team.

Honest

As Dr. Stephen R. Covey points out in The Seven Habits of Highly Successful People:

Honesty is telling the truth—in other words, conforming our words to reality. Integrity is conforming reality to our words—in other words, keeping promises and fulfilling expectations. This requires an integrated character, a oneness, primarily with self but also with life” (pp. 195–196).

When I use the term “honesty,” I am referring to both honesty and integrity.

At the most basic level, an honest person does not lie. He does not exaggerate or misrepresent the facts. “Spin control” is a foreign concept. So is bragging. If anything, he is given to understatement, especially about his own accomplishments.

He does not withhold negative information. He gives you “the good, the bad, and the ugly.” He has the courage to face reality head-on and make his words conform to it. He would never ask someone else to lie on his behalf or to cover for him.

He is also honest in giving others feedback. He is able to be direct without being hurtful. He doesn’t create unnecessary drama. He doesn’t say anything about those who are absent that he wouldn’t say if they were present.

Finally, an honest person keeps his commitments, even when it is difficult, expensive, or inconvenient. If he said he would do it, he does it. You can take it to the bank.

Early in my career, I was able to land the job as a marketing director at one of the larger publishing houses. The only problem was that I didn’t have any experience. None!

So, my new boss put me on a kind of “90-day probationary period.” He said, “Look, I think you will do fine, but let’s agree to a 90-day trial run. If everything goes as planned, I will give you a raise equal to 10% of your annual salary. If not, we’ll shake hands and part company as friends.” I enthusiastically agreed, rolled up my sleeves, and got to work.

Knowing that this was an enormous opportunity, I read everything I could on marketing. I worked hard. I got to the office early and left late. I was determined to prove to my boss that he had made the right decision.

At the end of the 90-day period, I was actually looking forward to my review. I knew I had exceeded his expectations. I was confident I would get the raise.

My boss called me into his office. After the usual pleasantries, he said, “Mike, you have done an outstanding job. You have exceeded my expectations in every way. I am very proud of you.”

“But I have one problem,” he continued. “Last week, our parent company instituted a salary and wage freeze. They have refused to consider any exceptions.”

My heart sank. Though I tried to appear professional, I’m sure that my disappointment was written all over my face.

Then he handed me an envelope and said the most amazing thing. “In that envelope is a check for the amount I promised you. It’s not from the company, but from me personally. I have discussed this with my wife, and we are both in agreement. You don’t have a choice about whether or not to accept it. So don’t even think about it. I made a commitment to you. You lived up to your end of the bargain—and then some—and I want to live up to mine.”

As a young businessman, that act made an enormous impression on me. Not only did it bond me to my boss—still one of my best friends—for life, it has provided concrete guidance in every tough decision I have ever made.

Hungry

A hungry person is someone with an appetite. Metaphorically speaking, his last meal is already a fading memory. He wants to eat, and he wants to eat now. All he can think about is food!

In other words, he doesn’t dwell on his past accomplishments. He is never satisfied. He is always reaching for more—setting higher goals. He is driven to exceed whatever expectations have been imposed upon him. This is just a part of his make-up.

A hungry person is intellectually curious. He reads constantly—newspapers, magazines, and books. Lots of books. He loves learning new things and sharing what he is learning with others.

He doesn’t get stuck in ruts. He is open to new ideas and new ways of solving old problems. He is always looking for the best solution and embraces change if it will take him—or the company—to a new level.

He comes to meetings prepared, having completed his homework. In the meeting, he is an active listener, asking lots of questions and taking notes. After the meeting, he follows up. He completes his assignments on-time without someone having to prod him to do so. He is relentless when it comes to execution.

In short, a hungry person “plays full out,” holding nothing back. More than anything, he wants to win and is willing to pay the price to do so.

Smart

A smart person usually scores high on traditional IQ tests. But not always. You have to be careful. Some people are book-smart but street-stupid. I’d like to have both. But if forced to choose, I’ll take the street-smart candidate.

A smart person is a quick study. He can “connect the dots” without a lot of help. He has a natural ability to “think laterally,” that is, across disciplines. He can apply what he learns in one field or category to another.

He is comfortable using metaphors and analogies. He knows how to make complex subjects simple without confusing himself and everyone else in the process.

I was a philosophy major. Some of the books I had to read were really difficult. I remember reading, re-reading, and then re-re-reading some particularly tough passages. Then it dawned on me. If this guy is so smart, why can’t he explain this in a way that is easy to follow? Maybe this is a case of “the emperor has no clothes.”

In my experience, confusion sometimes masquerades as complexity. Listening to an explanation, you might be tempted to think that you’re just not smart enough to understand the issue. But in reality, the presenter doesn’t understand it well enough to make it simple. I want people working for me who are smart enough to work through the complexity in order to arrive at simple explanation.

A smart person also asks thoughtful questions. He sees connections between topics that others miss. He is aware of nuances. He has diverse interests, which come in handy when he is trying to understand new information.

He is also able to focus mentally, for long periods of time if necessary. He doesn’t give up quickly. He keeps pressing until he gets the insight or clarity he needs. He is a creative problem-solver.

Finally, smart people have cognitive intelligence. That’s most of what I have covered here. But that alone is not sufficient. In my opinion, a successful candidate also needs emotional, relational, and even spiritual intelligence to succeed.

Summary

It’s hard to find the buried treasure unless you have a map. It’s difficult to win a scavenger hunt unless you have a list. And, it’s impossible to hire the right people unless you know exactly what you are looking for.

In my company, I want to hire people who are H3S: humble, honest, hungry, and smart. If I can do that consistently, I will build a great and enduring organization.

By the way, I have also developed a list of 25 questions to ask candidates. These questions help you discern whether or not he or she is the ideal candidate.

Question: What are you looking for in the ideal candidate? You can leave a comment by clicking here.
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  • http://www.motleyvision.org Kent Larsen

    FWIW, these principles seem similar to those found in Covey’s book, in the recent “The Mormon Way of Doing Business” by Jeff Benedict (Warner Books) and those in several books about Christians in Business.

  • http://sandro.groganz.com/weblog Sandro Groganz

    The dinner test – so true!

    Those executives who do not even notice a waiter appear arrogant. They don’t value “unimportant” work.

    Concerning the corporate world, it makes me worry that they don’t value little results of their team and actually disrespect the work of subordinates. Such executives think in terms of hierarchies and a constant power struggle.

  • http://www.michaelhyatt.com Michael Hyatt

    Kent,

    I agree; I don’t think there’s anything original here. These are universal principles. In fact, Patrick Lencioni mentions three of the four in his book, The Four Obsessions of an Extraordinary Executive. However, common sense is often uncommon in practice. I really wrote this as a reminder to myself. I wanted to establish a baseline for hiring new employees.

    Thanks for your input!

    Mike

  • http://www.noveljourney.blogspot.com Gina Holmes

    Wow, great litmus test. Who wouldn’t want to work for an organization that values these attributes? The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People should be required reading for most everybody, along with Dale Carnegie’s book. A postive, can-do attitude would also be on my list. Negativity is rampant and even with folks who are intelligent and teachable, the constant whining tends to bring down everyone’s spirit.

  • Anonymous

    Mike, I would encourage you to focus more on getting excellent people into the Thomas Nelson organization. As someone who has worked closely with Christian publishers (especially Thomas Nelson) over the last 5 years, I can honestly say that there is great room to improve in this area.

    I have worked with a handful of smart and talented executives at the highest level within Nelson but from the VP level down to acquisitions, editing and design the positions often seem to be filled with “friends from church” and other non-qualified people. This may sound harsh but after pondering the problems I see with your organization it is the one that really stands out as a possible root. Other Christian publishers I have worked with have savvy, driven and educated people in similar positions that really contrast a majority of the people I have seen at Nelson. They are good people that I love dearly but too often they are operating above their abilities and education.

    As I think more about it I wonder if this is partly due to promotion within instead of hiring externally to fill middle management positions. You have a lot of churn like many organizations and the people leaving seem to often be the high performance, driven people moving on to other opportunities. It is often the “warm bodies” that are left that somehow find their way into a promotion because they have been there 2 years, 5 years, etc. I am not saying I disagree with this in general but the result in Nelson’s situation seems to be negative.

    I apologize if these comments are negative. I do see great improvement in the organization since you have moved into the position of CEO but I was hoping that the changes would come more swiftly. But these things take time and I encourage you to continue using this blog to personally mentor your organization like you have been doing.

  • http://wowimo.blogspot.com KIP

    Mr. Hyatt,

    What a wonderful post to articulate exactly what you are looking for. It is also something that employees can strive towards, because not everyone is born or brought up with these traits, but can certainly work on them through personal improvement.

    Wouldn’t it be excellent if everyone in the business world lived by these standards? I found it a hard adjustment right after college (now a long time ago) to go from the “ideal management theory” to what actually exists in the real world – politics, “me-me-me”, etc. Not all companies are like that, and it’s refreshing to hear that Thomas Nelson is not among that bunch.

    Here is a challenge – what do you think your employees would say about it? Would you consider a survey that asks them how they think the company’s employees as a group rate on the 4 characteristics? It would certainly be interesting to see if your philosophy held up to your employees’ feelings about their coworkers.

  • Anonymous

    I don’t normally have the time or care enough to read the comments or respond on blogs. However, I appreciate your suggestions on working more effectively and this last post took me by surprise. I have worked closely with Thomas Nelson off and on for 10 years – dealing with many different levels from execs to editors to assistants. And disagree with the statement about underqualified employees seeming to be rampant throughout. True – internal promotions happen frequently and should IF that internal candidate is indeed qualified.
    However, the company leadership is what needs to be looked to since they make the decisions. They are the ones that promote and they are the ones that help breed the attitude of not ever being satisfied or excelling WHERE you are, but rather always looking for the NEXT promotion. Not to say we shouldn’t strive for more but wouldn’t it be more beneficial for everyone if people remained in a position and really excelled before “automatically” jumping to the next level in 18 months — the next level that they often aren’t qualified for and the next level that gets little to no guidance from those previously in that position or from those that supervise them. Also just as an aside — 99% of those “warm bodies” are the hardest working, most loyal, honest bodies in the company…that may not be as capable of showing off their abilities, and therefore aren’t recognized as being as smart, talented or qualified as their superior, who in actuality may or may not be.
    The other reality that I won’t go into but that everyone knows: salary and benefits is often what gets in the way of hiring qualified employees. Especially external candidates.

  • http://www.michaelhyatt.com Michael Hyatt

    These are all great comments. I am reading them all and soaking them all in. Keep them coming! Thanks.

  • http://www.billingsworld.com Greg Billings

    A couple of comments seem to want to downplay your posting – that you are aggregating information from other sources and not presenting anything new. To be blunt, I find these comments to be rather prideful.

    There are some ideas / concepts that can be learned and integrated into our personal actions easily, but, it has been my experience that as the world drifts away from divine truth, it is dificult to learn and maintain not only our belief system, but our ability to act according to that system.

    I found your posting very informative. It reminds me of what I hold of great worth and in thinking about H3S, what kind of course corrections might be necessary in how I act so that I act in accordance to my beliefs. It is far too easy to walk amongst the populous and forget what we are.

    I am not involved in the publishing industry and came across your other blog while I was researching tablet PC’s. I have both sites bookmarked and checkup on what you have to say on a regular basis.

    Thank you for sharing your insight.

  • Tony Jacobs

    In regards to “Anonymos #1″

    Think of it. All of these “warm bodies” and “friends from church” yet we have been and for that matter still are number one.

    Humm…..

  • Jim Thomason

    In response to Anonymous #1 above, I believe your information might have been correct at one time but is outdated. Since I oversee hiring for the company I can say definitively that the best candidates, both outside the company and within, are considered for almost every opening and certainly for middle management and above. I saw “almost” because we do prefer our own support staff for entry-level professional positions in many cases. About half the positions we fill at middle management are from outside the company and we feel very good about our talent level. You are, of course, free to disagree.

  • http://www.hu.grid-eu.com Antal Leisen

    Dear Mr Hyatt,

    The H3S symbol is excellently summarising what is the 9,9 in Grid. I feel one aspect to be missing however, that is the teamwork. Naturally, if all these traits are present in one’s behaviour the teamwork flows automatically out of the guy’s attitude towards coporate, team and individual objectives.
    Alas, the workforce in general lacks H3S or 9,9 qualities, let them be CEOs, mid-level managers or field workers. In principle each agrees with these qualities, in parctice a rare few can live them only.
    How to obtain these traits is a question many counselling services make themselves quick to give the best answer. What they tend to shun however is that CEOs, mid-level managers or field workers are all fallable without their teams’ support.
    Individual excellence has a drop effect only which soon gets vaporized if left alone in any environment. Individuals and their environment pulse together mutually demanding a dual focus and care.
    A critical balance is the key otherwise H3S or 9,9 qualities suffer losses immediatelly.
    Why have I written all these down commenting on you blog? Practically, since in Hungary the CEOs I meet all strive to have a 9,9 type workforce. But they get stiff when I suggest to have a 360 degree company survey with the CEO included. As if they knew something about themselves…
    It seems to be hard to believe that they shape their own corporate culture by their own behaviour.

  • Catherine

    Mr. Hyatt,

    I find myself in a similar situation as you described above. I was offered the position of Executive Assistant to the President at a rather large company almost directly out of college. I was up front in the interview, telling them the only experience I had was as a student assistant in offices around my college campus. Because of my testing scores and GPA in college, however, the President chose to give me a chance.

    Due to the fact that my boss has neither the time nor the inclination to train me, I found myself doing as you did: researching to learn all I can about the position of executive assistant. Unfortunately, what I’ve found says the position depends upon the boss. As the president of a large company yourself, I thought you might have some insight. Could you perhaps tell me what you expect from your own assistant: What kind of tasks does he/she do to assist you? What are some things I can do to give a little extra help? Are there any things I especially need to avoid? Any advice would be appreciated.

    Thanks

    • http://michaelhyatt.com Michael Hyatt

      This is probably a blog post on its own. There are a number of great books on this role. I recommend Managing Up by Rosanne Badowski. She is Jack Welch’s former Executive Assistant.

      • Catherine

        Thanks for the recommendation; I’ll look into it.

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  • http://www.nosuperheroes.com Chris Lautsbaugh

    I’ve looked for people who are teachable and who take initiative.
    These are different words to describe what you are saying. If you have those traits, the rest can be learned.

  • http://jonstolpe.wordpress.com Jon Stolpe

    Michael, I really appreciate this post and list.  As someone who is responsible for interviewing and contributing to hiring decisions, I know how important (and how challenging) it is to find the right person for the job.  Settling for anything less just leads to future problems.

    • http://brandonweldy.wordpress.com Brandon Weldy

      As a leader working in a church I mostly work with volunteers and your last statement is so true! When I just accept anyone for any job it creates some sticky situations and feelings get hurt. However if I take the time to find something someone is passionate about and good at then it creates for a much better situation.

  • http://www.godsabsolutelove.com Patricia Zell

    Although I’m not in a position to hire people (and I never want to be in that position), your post still is a good read from the standpoint of being an employee. I know that I, without having the necessary certifications, was originally hired for my position because my then-boss didn’t want to just put a “warm body” in the classroom. She was willing to look outside the box and to hire me for the job. She knew I would do whatever was necessary to succeed, and I met her expectations.

    • http://brandonweldy.wordpress.com Brandon Weldy

      That’s a great point. I was only looking at this from the standpoint of me hiring people (or accepting volunteers in my case). This is extremely valuable to look at in the standpoint of an employee!

  • http://blog.cyberquill.com Cyberquill

    What you’re looking for is THS (triatomic hydrogen sulfide). Highly unstable. 

    • http://tonychung.ca tonychung

      Haha! I wondered what that chemical symbol really meant!

  • Trina

    Well said, Michael.  I have often wondered about the people that some of my former bosses have hired (excluding me of course).  What must they have been thinking! … or not thinking.  Yours is a good plan.  Thank you for sharing.

  • http://www.christianfaithatwork.com Chris Patton

    Unlike Patricia, I am in a position to hire and this list is a great guide to hiring the right person!

    Like Patricia, I think this is just as good a list for us to follow every day as employees or leaders.  Not only is it necessary to FIND the right people, but in order to keep them, we have to BE the right people as well!  These kind of people will not stay around long if they are not working with other right people.

    I am doing a series on this very idea (Character Issues For Leaders) on my blog.  It is just so easy to fall prey to a slip here or there…great leaders cannot afford to let that happen often.

    • http://michaelhyatt.com Michael Hyatt

      Yes, I found this list helps me to focus on character first, competency second. Both are important. I wouldn’t want either without the other. But I think it establishes the right priority.

      • http://www.christianfaithatwork.com Chris Patton

        I agree that both are important.  I also agree that character comes first, then competency (or capacity).  

        Separate from competency/capacity, though some often lump them together, is skill.

        Neither character nor competency/capacity can be taught.  Either you have it or you do not.  Skill, however, can be learned.  

        Given the choice, I would take someone with character and competency/capacity and no skill over someone who has mastered the skills, but lacks either of the other two qualities.  The latter will either end up in a scandal (dishonest) or be unable to adapt to change in their industry (low capacity).

      • Anonymous

        Funny you should mention character and competency.  As I read this, I was thinking of Bill Hybels’ similar list:  character, competency, and chemistry–the ability to get along with and work well with others.

        A friend of mine is in management.  He was recently told to lay off three employees of his choosing.  Here’s how he made his decision:
        1)  The first guy to go was easy.  He got rid of the guy he liked the least.  The guy regularly did things that ticked him off.
        2) The second guy he liked, but this one didn’t get along with his coworkers.  There was constant drama between him and everyone else.
        3) The third guy “only did his job”.  Never late, never early, never did more than what he was asked.

        I’ve shared this story with multiple groups of young people. I found it very instructive.  And notice, in my friend’s estimation, chemistry trumped competency.

  • http://www.jmlalonde.com Joe Lalonde

    You list out 4 great things to look for in a hire.

    2 things that I think are important when looking for a hire-

    Someone who fits well with the team:
    If the personality of the person does not fit well with the others on your team, there could be quite a bit of conflict. Looking for someone who melds well with the team is very important.

    As Dave Ramsey put it in EntreLeadership, someone who isn’t with CRAZY.
    I laughed when I read his example of a potential hire that was with crazy. If you have to deal with CRAZY at home, they will, most likely, be unfocused at work. Their attention is divided more than most and their stress level is off the charts.

    • http://michaelhyatt.com Michael Hyatt

      The last one is excellent. Yet another reason to take the prospect to dinner with their spouse.

      • http://tonychung.ca tonychung

        Oh dear. I often feel like I am with CRAZY. Snicker. CRAZY is the new black.

    • Christian Nielsen

      I think the first point here is key. The person you are hiring may be a genius, they may have the right set of skills for the job, but if they aren’t suited for the corporate culture they won’t last long.

  • http://chrisvonada.com chris vonada

    I almost didn’t read this post today  Michael as I’m not in the “build my business” mode… but I’m very glad I did read it as it could have easily been titled “How To Be A Better Me”

    thank you for another great one!!

    • http://www.realchaseadams.com/about-the-real-chase-adams/ Chase Adams

      I agree Chris. I started reading this and immediately thought: This is a great list for the new hire/leader in general to implement in life!

      Michael, I’ve often had trouble putting into perspective what humility really looks like, it was a huge take away for me to see that it’s okay to be confident in your ability (with a sharp eye on feigning cockiness). 

  • Ken

    Sounds like a great “formula” for hiring healthy human beings. I like it. Great post.

  • http://emuelle1.blogspot.com Eric S. Mueller

    Great post, Michael. I haven’t done hiring to this point in my career, but those are qualities I try to reflect. 

    I liked your point about the poorly-written philosophy book. I was reading a book over the weekend and stumbled across a paragraph. I finally tried to take it apart word by word, and realized I wasn’t the problem. The paragraph was poorly written.  According to the Trivium, being able to express an opinion or argument from combining other concepts is the goal of learning.

    • http://www.gailsangle.com Gail

      I’m a technology project manager and was just teaching my new Business Analysts yesterday that, when training, they should always give non technology examples too. This is so that people who aren’t wired to think that way can still understand the concept. When we use an anology from every day life like “Making Coffee Use Case” or “Fire Drill Testing Scenario” everyone should understand. This helps bring the complex and technical to the simple that all can understand.

      • http://emuelle1.blogspot.com Eric S. Mueller

        Gail, that’s a great point. Us tech people tend to have trouble communicating with people who don’t do tech. I’ve always tried to break things down so people can understand them. I can’t say I’ve ever been asked in a job interview if I can translate tech to non-tech.

        • http://www.gailsangle.com Gail

          It would make a good interview question. Although, in my interviewing experience you pick up pretty quickly if someone is all “geek speak” or if they can switch off the tech speak and explain simply.

  • Matt Stuckey

    Michael – really good stuff!  My biggest question is what’s the best way to find these kind of folks?  I’ve been doing the hiring for my company now for about 5 years, and can name 3 or 4 people I’ve hired that meet many of these criteria, but not all of them…

    • http://michaelhyatt.com Michael Hyatt

      The best source I’ve found is referrals. Circulate my post—or just the criteria—and ask, “Do you know anyone like this?”

  • http://www.philippknoll.com Philipp Knoll

    Besides the fact that these are great lessons to be learned if you mean to hire someone it also showed me one more thing (and this is just for me personally): With the few corporate jobs I had the employer (recruiting manager) did a horrible job selecting me! Not that I don’t consider myself smart enough or willing enough or educated enough – I’m just not built to fit into a ‘job’. Michael, your list is assures me of that once again. Finding the right people to foster your own business is an art in itself. I recently tested some people for assistant positions – no luck there so far. Knowing what to look for doesn’t makes it easier to find the right talents but it is no guarantee.

    As for myself – I like to hire and I’m great with clients – but – you dot want to be my boss…

  • Matt Lee

    I’m glad this was published this week. I have an interview Friday and I believe I exemplify all of these characteristics with an exception in Smart. I sometimes have to work harder to understand something that someone else might get right away. But I always figure it out.

    This is an extremely motivating and encouraging post.

  • http://paulcoughlin.com Paul Coughlin

    Loved that post Michael – thanks again.

    Reflecting on your question – I would say that the ideal candidate and the ‘role’ need to be matched. The extreme – the ideal candidate for one role, can be the worst candidate for another. So those questions you asked at the beginning – what do we want, for me are best asked within the context of the role requirements.

    A person has particular requirements (personal needs, drivers and motivators), and they have certain competencies (natural talents). The role also has particular requirements (competencies), and provides certain rewards.

    And so the best candidate, is a good match for a clearly defined role. In fact, I don’t believe an ideal candidate can be defined without a role to be ‘assessed’ against.

    Career and role speciality requires more specific ‘trade’ talents. Leadership roles require more ‘leadership’ talents. The H3S is a brilliant summary of Leadership role requirements.

    Perhaps the most exciting thing for me – is we can now accurately and easily measure these so-called intangibles – and see a clear picture of the H3S – sometimes we even see what the person themselves doesn’t see..

    Great post – it got me asking myself questions, and looking for ways to apply the insights.. 

    Thanks,
    Paul

  • http://successbeginstoday.org/wordpress John Richardson

    Great formula, Michael. Very clever use of symbols. This is a very powerful and adaptable list. It is well worth printing and hanging on the H.R. wall! If I had to come up with a formula, I would use the same one I use for speaking. It would go like this…

    Formula = H4

    Represented by…

    1. Head: Does the candidate know how to think? Can they think through problems? Can they think on their feet?
    2. Heart: Does the person know how to feel? Are they compassionate and understanding of others? Do they truly care about employees and customers?
    3. Hands: Does the person know how to give back? Are they generous instead of self centered? Do they know WHY they want the job?
    4. Humor: Does the candidate have a good sense of humor? Are they fun to be around? Do they take themselves too seriously or do they have a positive outlook on life.

    I have met a lot of applicants who have number one. They are book smart, but unfortunately they don’t have a heart for people. If you hire someone like this, employees are relegated to a number. If you can truly find someone who knows WHY they want the job and how it will impact the lives of others, you have found someone who can take the company to a new level. 

    If you find someone who has a strong 1, 2, and 3 they should definitely be on your short list. If they leave you with a smile, you should hire them.

    • http://michaelhyatt.com Michael Hyatt

      I like your formula, John. Excellent!

    • http://www.gailsangle.com Gail

      Just don’t hire them on humour alone. I’ve worked with people must have got the job because they made the interviewers laugh. They certainly don’t have the other 3 but “we liked him the most”. They are definitely funny people but humour only takes you so far if you can’t do the job and then people start to resent you.

  • Steve

    Can you elaborate on the following statement:

     

    “He might be ambitious for the cause, for the company, or
    for the team, but he is not ambitious for himself.”

     

    I’m willing to concede that I may not be looking at this
    from the correct perspective, but I’ve always had bad feelings about companies
    that push the idea of “for the company” – but not yourself.  Many companies want to grow and be
    profitable, but somehow they frown on an individual wanting to grow and be
    profitable. 

     

    If I’m ambitious and want to grow myself it seems the best
    way to do that is by being ambitions for the company and helping them grow –
    seems like two sides of the same coin to me.

    • http://michaelhyatt.com Michael Hyatt

      Thanks for your question. I am using ambition in a more negative context. I am all for personal growth. (Much of my blog is about that.) But I am thinking of the individual who puts his own needs and gain above the company. I am trying to avoid the kind of person who sees the company as a means to his end rather than having an attitude of service, focusing on the company’s success.
      In my experience, the best way to succeed is make sure you make others successful.

      • http://tonychung.ca tonychung

        John Maxwell talks about this in How Successful People Think. When a person fights at work, is he fighting to make a stand for the company to do the right thing, or as a grandstanding position to elevate himself?

        We see this behaviour a lot in the mud slinging during political campaigns. I would rather candidates focused on the issues instead of chastising their opponent.

        I think that’s why I like our martial arts class. We never call our sparring partner our “opponent”. And we are encouraged to help the other to become better at self defense and seizing opportunities to breach out defenses.

  • http://www.ryanhanley.com/about Ryan Hanley

    In my insurance business we have Sales Meetings every Monday morning.  We talk about Hunger a lot.  If you don’t want the success you will never achieve it… 

    Great stuff Michael!

    Thank you.

  • Anne

    I am interviewing several people tomorrow.  This post has been very timely.  Thank you.

  • http://bentheredothat.com Ben Patterson

    Honesty is key. There’s also a ‘woo’ factor that I look for.

  • Mark Riggins

    Thanks for this GREAT list Michael! The only thing I would add is chemistry. Is this someone I’ll enjoy seeing on my caller id and someone I want to influence our organizational culture? Though hard to measure, today I shared 4 Ways to Measure Chemistry When Hiring: http://tinyurl.com/chlu9cb. 

    • http://michaelhyatt.com Michael Hyatt

      Chemistry is a great one. Thanks.

  • http://www.eastafricametaproject.org/ Steve Barkley

    The quality I think is most important in an employee is their willingness to take personal responsibility for a job or task.  From that flow all the other characteristics that you want to see.  

    • http://tonychung.ca tonychung

      Ooh… ownership, AKA personal leadership. I expected that from my church worship teams, but could never make headway teaching them this. Character inspires behaviour, and I’m sorry, but you can’t TEACH character. The other person has to learn it.

  • http://www.yuzzi.com Rick Yuzzi

    Great post. Not only good advice on hiring, but it also makes you take stock in yourself and whether your boss would be glad they hired you.

  • https://turnerbethany.wordpress.com/ turner_bethany

    This post could not have come at a better time. My nonprofit is hiring right now, and I seem to be the one in charge of it now. It is a task I have never done before but am excited to have the opportunity. 
    This post also challenged me to make sure I am that type of employee. Just because I have the job currently doesn’t mean I can do whatever I want and still keep it. Great check-up.

  • http://www.the-white-stone.blogspot.com Brian Owen

    I look for people with perseverance.  People who are determined to press forward even in difficult situations. 

    I also look for team players…people who can “play in the sandbox” together with a diverse team of individuals.

  • http://twitter.com/Timbuktoons Timbuktoons

    Great post! Very easy to explain and implement. We just finished breaking down what we’re looking for on our team: Helpful, Inventive, Open, Curious, Flexible and Reliable. But we start the process by explaining who we are (http://timbuktoons.com/timbukcloud-team/) to establish what we value. The goal for us is to make sure there is chemistry and like-mindedness but creative diversity.

  • R G Rampy

    One of your best columns *ever*, Michael.  This is an excellent tool by which to judge one’s own on-the-job performance.  Every college graduate should read it!

  • http://higheredcareercoach.com/ Sean Cook

    Thanks for the excellent post,  Michael. I think you’ve explained perfectly the perspective I take toward hiring. Also, it was good to read this morning, as I am considering how well I am holding myself to these same standards.

  • http://brandonweldy.wordpress.com Brandon Weldy

    I am in no position to hire people but I am always on the lookout for volunteers. This list is extremely helpful! It is better for me to find people who exhibit these qualities rather than not and wind up having to remove them later. I always look for someone to be honest; and not just with me but with everyone. I don’t want a volunteer who will be going behind my back and talking bad about me and acting like everything is hunky-dory to my face. 
    This list is also going to help me be a better worker!

  • http://www.timbuktoons.com/ Todd

    Could not agree more! As a leader you don’t want to spend your time on your staff’s weaknesses, but finding ways to let them work in their strengths. For the most part, adults “are who they are”. At Timbuktoons, we set up systems (tests, internships, trial periods) to make sure someone is a good fit before we pull them on as an employee. Thanks for this post Mr. Hyatt! Great stuff!

  • Rob Sorbo

    I think I meet those parameters, and I usually get the job whenever I manage to get an interview. My question is how do you put those qualities on paper? How does the H3S candidate land an interview?

    • http://michaelhyatt.com Michael Hyatt

      I would simply state them (though the “smart” one might be a little tricky). I don’t know that I have any advice for you on landing the interview.

  • Terri Brown

    Thanks for this article.  I am in a job where I feel like a fish out of water, but I think I am the H3S.  This is an encouragement to me, as I am trying to develop some other interests that could one day be an employment alternative and I feel employable!  Thanks again.

  • Anonymous

    This wasn’t your point at all, but I LOVE what you wrote about having to reread difficult passages because the the so-called brilliant writer couldn’t make it understandable! 

    I’ve often wondered why a book that is supposed to be so all-fired-great begins with the most boring chapter full of obscurities. If someone tells me “You just have to get past the beginning”, I think “Forget it!” My time is too important to waste if the author can’t write well enough to capture me. (Also makes me wonder if the editors were asleep at the wheel.)

    • http://michaelhyatt.com Michael Hyatt

      I totally agree. I don’t get why any author would do that intentionally.

  • http://www.sundijo.com Sundi Jo Graham

    Great post. Dave Ramsey does a great job of highlighting some of these topics in EntreLeadership. That was a fantastic book that I couldn’t put down. 

  • http://twitter.com/jayholden jayholden

    Any system that recognizes the importance of character is a great improvement over skills/resume based hiring. This post is good and easily remembered advice. For years I’ve hired: 75% on whether or not I think you’ll show up for work on time; 15% on your ability to “fit in”; and, 10% on skill. This was a good guide and still part of the process for me. About 6 years ago I began building Strengths(Gallup) profiles for each unique position. The hiring decision is now made primarily on my ability to put you in a spot where you can spend at least 75% of your day utilizing your top 5 strengths. Call it “Strategic Diversity”. It’s a recognition of how God made each one of us unique in our personalities, talents and gifts.  So, our organization is more like an Ocean’s 11 team than a box of Christmas lights. We are more productive and employees are happier and more engaged! I have a whole system built for this for a Marketing team’s positions if anyone is interested. Thanks Michael for putting all the time and effort into these great posts.

    • Rob Sorbo

      Sounds like a great place to work. Holler if you ever need Anayltical, Responsible, Belief, Relator, Ideation.

      • http://twitter.com/jayholden jayholden

        Rob – Interesting set of strengths. what kind of work do you do now or what work would you say fits you best?

        • Rob Sorbo

          My official title is Word Processing Specialist (basically I’m an editor and I do document layout and printing) for the World Missions department of the Assemblies of God.

          My long term goal is serve in administration at nonprofits or ministries–I want my work to make the feet-on-the-ground servants’ lives easier.

          • http://twitter.com/jayholden jayholden

            Small world – I’m in Branson. Good to meet you here.

  • http://twitter.com/JobCoachHQ Douglas Andrews

    WOW, Michael, outstanding post.  What more could I add in an ideal candidate?   The best predictor of the future is the past.  What have you done in your past that will help me in my future?  

  • http://www.hope101.net Lori Tracy Boruff

    This is great Michael!  Currently I’m on the other end as newly hired employee working part time. As an employee I desire to meet what you have defined as a H3S formula.

    The other side of the coin is the employer who makes a job challenging. My boss is a great guy but doesn’t have his own goals or job description defined which leaves me feeling like I never do the right thing because things often change or vague. I often feel defeated.

    As much as one seeks to find H3S employees, an employer himself must strive to follow the formula.

    Two things stood out to me from your post:
    1)   I realized I’ve wanted to give up too easily but Smart employees do not give up easily so I’ll dig a little deeper. 
    2)   H3S organizations are ‘enduring.’   No organization goes into business with the thought of being out of business but times are tough.  H3S employees/employers will survive! Great insight for a solid foundation.

    Things happen for a reason. Maybe my boss is teaching me what NOT to do so when I have my own company someday I’ll be a H3S employer hiring H3S employees!

    • http://www.tnealtarver.wordpress.com TNeal

      Lori, love your attitude. You obviously are a lifetime learner, a great quality to have. You also offer great insight about “enduring” organizations as well as people who endure and leave a lasting impression. I think you must fit into the latter category.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=668327770 June JD Wilson

    Can we see a reverse process to see who should stay? ;-)(I’m serious.)

  • Anonymous

    Michael — Very incisive post. Excellent.

    In an earlier comment I mentioned I made a run at standup comedy. I was also a member of an improv troupe for 3 years, and that illuminated some aspects of the human character that have informed my work life. From my improv background, here are (additional) characteristics worth seeking:

    • FUN — Light-hearted, funny, able to put things in perspective. Great improv people can take the darkest situation and find some way to ‘laugh it off.’

    • QUICK STUDY (ABLE TO ‘READ THE ROOM’) — Very important. Improv people live and die with their ability to ‘read the room’ — get an intuitive understanding of the audience, and how to make them laugh. This is a GREAT quality to have when presenting to clients. Does this client want exuberance, or quiet competence? Where is the power in the room, and how can that person be targeted without causing the others to feel slighted?

    • COOPERATIVE — The first lesson of improv is that you MUST say “yes” to whatever is said on stage. No arguing! Go with it! Improv folks “get off it” quickly and move on. This has really helped me in my own career. My boss loves the fact that — no matter how much time and effort I put into an idea or a proposal — if the client says no, I give it up and move on to the next thing.

    NOTE — These qualities complement “humble, smart, hungry and honest.”

    • http://michaelhyatt.com Michael Hyatt

      Love it. Very interesting parallel.

  • http://www.tnealtarver.wordpress.com TNeal

    Do I get points off humility if I say, “You want to take me to lunch!”

  • http://www.tnealtarver.wordpress.com TNeal

    From the start, since I’m not working within a business context, I thought in terms of ideal reader versus ideal hire. I know, as an author, I’ve heard about the need to describe your ideal reader. John Locke did the best job of describing this in his book about his ebook success. You’ve done an excellent job of describing the people I’d love to work with, whether as publishers, worshipers, or good friends.

    Your story about your boss went straight into the Evernote file. Excellent!

  • http://About.me/marcmillan Marc Millan

    Incredible post, i love how you broke each quality down. This works for me, I believe it’s a bit more relevant to what I’ve been used to from Bill Hybels the 3C’s.
    M_

    • http://brandonweldy.wordpress.com Brandon Weldy

      What are Bill Hybels 3Cs?

      • http://michaelhyatt.com Michael Hyatt

        Character, competency, chemistry.

  • Yvonne Seballo

    This article was very interesting to read. I shall apply the knowledge to myself. Thank You!

  • http://struggletovictory.wordpress.com Kari Scare

    Because I work alone and from home, hiring people is not something I do. However, I have several people in my life who do have to hire and manage people, and I will share this post with them. You have said so well not only what to look for when hiring people, but also what expect from current employees. I think managers would do well in talking to their current employees about these traits and using them in training. For me, I want to have these qualities simply as part of my character because I feel they are so important. Great post!

    • http://brandonweldy.wordpress.com Brandon Weldy

      I am also in no position to be hiring, but I have enjoyed looking at this list to see areas that I can improve!

  • http://www.CrazyAboutChurch.com Charles Specht

    A good list, indeed.

  • http://twitter.com/wonderwomanimno Wonder Woman I’m Not

    Along these lines I also look for the candidate with “a fire in their belly”.  The burning desire to do what’s best for the company, even when it’s uncomfortable.  The desire to do a good job and look for ways to leave their position better than when they found it. 

    We’re having a terrible time right now filling a couple of open positions in my department.  The hiring manager is getting so down about it he’s ready to “settle” for a candidate but I won’t let him.  I told him that settling now will only bring you heartbreak in the future.     

    Excellent post, I can only add that holding out for the perfect person can be difficult but will benefit you in the long wrong.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/David-Brownlee/1659996906 David Brownlee

    Hello Michael,

    I very much enjoy reading and learning from your blogs. Awesome material! One slight sticky point with this. The blog starts out “Most managers…” How about rephrasing this to “Most leaders…”

    • http://michaelhyatt.com Michael Hyatt

      Great suggestion. Done!

  • http://twitter.com/DrJackKing Jack King

    Michael, this post struck me as hypocritical and power-full (not a good thing).  For example, great leaders would never refer to people who work with them as ‘employees.’  Moreover, greatness is derived through serving, not leading.  Additionally, anyone who looks at those who work with them as something ‘less’ than them (leader versus employee) is nothing more than a manager, and a poor one at that.  Finally, it’s child’s play for a ‘leader’ to surround themselves with ‘good’ people; such a ‘leader’ is 100% focused on achieving their own dream (many call it their ‘vision’) and, as such, lacks the moral courage to face an uncertain world as a leader who willingly lifts others within reach of dreams of their own.  It seems to me the only thing one need to look for in those who want to work with them is love.  Find that and you’ve found the right person.  Of course, you won’t find it unless they first find it in you.   Putting the organization, even if it is great and enduring, ahead of the people does not strike me as an act of love. ~Jack

    • http://michaelhyatt.com Michael Hyatt

      Interesting. What kind of work do you do, Jack? I would be interested to understand your experience.

  • http://golfwisdomlife.com Larry Galley

    Hi Michael, this blog has immediate significance to our household.  We have a young man who can benefit from, and take confidence in, the reality that getting a start on a career is every bit as much about H3S as it is about grades or the particular school he went to.  I particularly appreciated your comments about “street smarts”, a commodity I feel often gets left in the dust.  Candidly, by way of example, if I were looking for someone to help me navigate the bayou swamps of Louisiana I’d be much more inclined to select a good o’ boy from the area over a fresh trained Harvard Lawyer. I’d much prefer to catch lunch than be lunch.

    Thanks again,

    Larry Galley

  • http://KatieAx.blogspot.com Katie Axelson

    As someone who is job-searching, thank you for showing the world from the other side of the desk. It helped me see what I do well and where I need to improve.

    Katie

  • http://twitter.com/peteccsb Peter Guirguis

    This is a great article Mike!  I’m about to hire an employee myself and I’m going to be re-reading this article before I conduct the interview. Do you have any suggestions on interview questions to ask to find out if people meet the H3S standard?

    • http://michaelhyatt.com Michael Hyatt

      In fact, I do. Stay tuned for my post tomorrow, and I will give you 25!

  • http://www.itsworthnoting.com Levi Smith

    Humility is a big one for us too. It makes everything else so much easier.

  • http://www.flavors.me/jasmine84 Jennifer Rowsell

    How come your candidate is always a he?

    • http://michaelhyatt.com Michael Hyatt

      Perhaps you missed the paragraph in the intro that said this: “For simplicity sake, I’m going to use the masculine pronoun below, but it should be understood that the ideal candidate may, of course, be either a man or a woman. Gender is irrelevant.” Thanks.

      • http://www.flavors.me/jasmine84 Jennifer Rowsell

        Yep, missed that. That’s what happens when you scan Google Reader super quickly. My apologies. :)

    • http://www.johngallagherblog.com John Gallagher

      Jennifer,  Mike addressed that before he went into the H3S when he states: “For simplicity sake, I’m going to use the masculine pronoun below, but it should be understood that the ideal candidate may, of course, be either a man or a woman. Gender is irrelevant”

  • Karen

    you have one of most consistently excellent blogs and I look forward to reading it

    today was no exception with one big exception….it isn’t enough to say gender is irrelevant and take the masculine as a reference for leaders as a short cut…found it difficult to read such great information and experience it with one “her” and at least 94 male references…yes, it is awkward to alternate male and female, but it works and sends an important message

    thanks!

  • http://www.johngallagherblog.com John Gallagher

    Mike,  This is one of the longer posts I have read of yours and every word is needed!  These 4 criteria are great.  I would try to add “Attitude”, but it looks as though that could be covered in Hungry.  These are so important AND so difficult to identify in the interview process.  Another reason to promote from within.

  • http://twitter.com/robynbcollins robyn blaikiecollins

    I like to hire people that i would want to have lunch people. I like to work with people that i like. 
    (the perfomance is implied)

  • Quills1

    I would like to find a company were everyone is hired with and demonstrates the 3Hs   rather than the current  3P1 x3
    Which stands for :  having to juggle 3 positions rolled into 1 under 3 managers  to save the company the expense of honestly hiring enough staff.  Where  very” hungry” workers then demonstrate the ” every man for themselves trait” and  bullying of the meek and humble is rife and where  “Smart” is keeping a low profile in the mail room not in the boardroom.

    So where are the workplaces full of  happy golden labradors then, seen any lately?  

  • http://RichardBurkey.wordpress.com Richard Burkey

    I look for the 5 C’s (most of these I got from Bill Hybels): Chemistry, Character, Competence, Christ, Commitment. 

  • http://tonychung.ca tonychung

    Michael: As I read this post, I found myself resisting the response of the rich young ruler within me. He kept trying to get out, yelling, “I do that! I do that…!” Then I realized that the only reason I tracked with you is because several of my pastors up in the great wet north shared the same principles. Why, this message is tried and true, practical, and applicable in every situation–it’s downright biblical!

    Thanks again for your consistency and straight shooting. The leadership world is a better place because of you!

    • http://michaelhyatt.com Michael Hyatt

      Thanks, Tony. I appreciate that.

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  • http://www.realchaseadams.com/about-the-real-chase-adams/ Chase Adams

    I agree Chris. I started reading this and immediately thought: This is a great list for the new hire/leader in general to implement in life!

    Michael, I’ve often had trouble putting into perspective what humility really looks like, it was a huge take away for me to see that it’s okay to be confident in your ability (with a sharp eye on feigning cockiness). 

  • Mona Mikhail

    I am an HR manager in a  small christian school and your article was forwarded to me by the Headmaster.
    I thank you so much for this eye opening simple article and appreciate your insight. The big question for me is: how to gauge that in a resume+interview process? I know reading through the resume’s lines and being a good observer / asking the right questions in the interview helps a lot, but it is still a challenge.

  • http://uma-maheswaran.blogspot.com/ Uma Maheswaran S

    I look primarily for integrity,  right attitude, average Intelligence Quotient & Emotional Quotient, excution skills among the new recruits.

  • http://www.meeklabs.com meeklabs

    Humble and Smart have a hard time going together.  Even better is Humble + Smart + Experienced.  Especially in the Tech industry.  If you can find them, hire immediately!

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  • http://www.SevenPillarsOfSuccess.Net Louise Thaxton

    What a great model for that “ideal” hire!   I like the way you define “smart” also – and looking for someone with emotional, relational and spirtual intelligence is something I think is extremely important. 

  • Tricia Dempsey

    Loved your blog and am curious – do you have a behavioral interview guide for these characteristics you would be willing to share?

    • http://michaelhyatt.com Michael Hyatt

      I don’t. Sorry.

  • Teddy Ray

    This was a very helpful article. It was so on target that I began searching for anything you had written on performance evaluations. Alas, I can’t find anything. Have you written about how to conduct a performance evaluation? If not, would you consider it?

  • http://twitter.com/stephsday stephsday

    I’m particularly glad that you included humility in your list of ideal qualities. Your definition was among the best I have read. 

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  • http://profinitydevelopment.com Dr Hosley

    I appreciate your perspective on and have referred back to it several times over the past few days.  I work in developing people and helping companies get the most out of their investment in people. 

    A common question I encounter is how do I not only find people with the H3S qualities but are also a great fit for the position?  I have started using and advocating a technology called the Core Values Index that seems to be emerging as one of the best assessment tools on the market for matching the nature of an individual with the requirements of the job.  For those of you looking for a tool I suggest you check it out. 

    What is your take on assessments for hiring?

  • http://specializingintheimpossible.wordpress.com/ Laura Johnson

    I love your list.  I don’t have the final say on hiring at our company, and our hiring pool is small enough my boss isn’t picky. 
    BUT this list definitely inspires me to be a better employee and person!

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  • Judy Dobles

    When hiring an experienced person, I look for people who have accomplished things in complex organizations.  That tells me two things: [1]  they know how to work with people across multiple functions and [2] they have a basis towards action.  There are a lot of smart people who cannot turn ideas into action.

  • http://www.loripotter.com/ Lori Potter

    Thank you so much for this list!  As someone searching for a new job, this information really helps me gather my thoughts and prepare more effectively for future interviews.  Much appreciated!

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  • http://www.MissionMusings.ca Michelle Porter

    My top three hiring traits are:
    1. Attitude
    2. Loyalty
    3. Teachability

    I have often thought about this subject, so wrote a more detailed response on my blog: 

    http://www.missionmusings.com/2012/05/top-3-hiring-traits.html

  • Steve Choi

    3 C’s
    Character
    Chemistry
    Competence

    Great post Michael

  • Peter Reoebert

    Are there any online “tests” for prospective employees to take, to determine if they are right for the position and have the qualities that you are looking for, I am aware of Strengthfinder and DISC, any others?

    • http://michaelhyatt.com/ Michael Hyatt

      Almost all the test are online if you search. I also like Myers-Briggs. There are numerous, online versions, many of them free.

  • TheIntersexion

    This is a great post. As I read I realized that I have these qualities, with some space to grow no doubt. However, given the reality that these qualities are not things that can easily be shown in ones resume, I wonder if you have any suggestions for how one can show/display these three qualities in the initial submission of cover letters/resumes. It seems that an employer would not be able to make these determinations about a candidate unless there is an interview. How do candidates with limited experience who yet have these foundational character qualities get a foot in the door of organizations?

  • http://christopherbattles.net/ Christopher Battles

    Thank you.
    You implemented the smart part by being able to easily summarize this and also really expand upon each point.

    K, bye

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  • rama d

    Love it! It was a great read. Interviews come and go, but
    it’s landing the job that matters at the end of the day. I’m currently looking
    for a job and I came across a site that asked some leaders about what they
    consider when hiring. It gave me great insight on how managers think. Here’s
    the link to the article: http://blog.bayt.com/2013/09/do-you-have-what-it-takes-14-leaders-tell-us-what-they-look-for-in-a-new-hire/.
    Happy reading! :)

  • Henry Huang

    Very insightful – what about how to become and grow in these characteristics as a candidate? I’m fairly new to the workforce (didn’t work through college) and I’d love to be able to grow in these ways even in the job that I’m at now.