Scott Steinberg, a top-ranked international event speaker on the lecture circuit, recently published an article on mashable - http://mashable.com/2013/02/12/job-skills/ that speaks to the most important traits when hiring new employees and I could not agree more but he missed a key ingredient.
- Enthusiasm - the energy has to be there, this defines the entire interview when the interviewee walks in the door. For me the winning make it happen attitude prevails above all else.
- Communication skills - it takes 5 minutes to determine if the interviewee has the right level of communication skills. In this day and age, young adults pick up soft skills early and it shows. If someone has not picked up the right level of skills it also shows and quickly.
- Fit - many of us spend as much time in the office as we do at home. Hence the ability to 'fit' into the culture matters so much. It matters when an employee has to work with a team i.e. collaborate or even consult.
The one thing the article does not talk about is perseverance, the ability to go the extra mile, make things happen even when times are tough. Many people give up very easily, but the ones that succeed never give up, they push even harder when times are tough. If you fail, get up and go at it again, just keep at it. Failure is an opportunity to learn and get better at something. It takes mental and physical stamina to keep going and this is something that cannot be ignored. It also means that you can never take no for an answer. If someone turns you down, find the next person to pitch or talk to. He/she is out there.