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The Right Attitude is Everything
I recently read an article entitled “Why I Regretted Hiring the Perfect Employee” by Marc Lore. Now, I don’t know Marc nor do I typically follow his blog posts but I happened across this article and he highlighted several points that I found both interesting and enlightening. His article discussed how he hired an employee, that on paper, looked like the perfect employee. He had the ivy league background, great work experience, strong referrals, etc.; all things pointing to him being a great hire. But shortly after he hired this person he began to complain and displayed a negative attitude at work, causing a ripple effect among the other employees. Looking back on it, the author eluded to several signs during the interview process that should have tipped him off. Here are a few quotes from the article:
“I incorrectly dismissed the fact that many of the questions he asked during the interview focused more on personal career objectives than on how he could contribute to the company’s mission.”
“In my experience, the best employees are positive, low maintenance and unselfish”
“Whether someone is an intern or a vice president, having the right attitude is everything.”
When I am coaching candidates and helping them prepare for their interviews with our client companies, I always discuss attitude and how important of a factor it is in the interview process (and once you are working in your job). As a JMO, your education and military experience can only take you so far, and I have unfortunately seen JMOs with great credentials get ruled out of an interview because of an inferior attitude. At the same time, if you are a JMO that may not have the best credentials or objective assets, you can mitigate some of that with the right attitude.
With a development candidate type of position, companies are looking for someone to solve two distinct problems – 1) someone that can fill the role and make an immediate impact; and 2) grow into increasing roles of responsibility within the company. Remember, its the companies that own the interview simply because they have the open position and you are looking for a job/career. You must demonstrate the value you can bring and how you can contribute to the organization first. It is not that recruiters/employers don’t want ambitious people working for them that have their own personal goals. But, companies are looking for people who are equally motivated to help their team, organization, and company be successful. Be a giver first and show how you can contribute to the team and the company, and if you can successfully do that, the job offer and subsequent promotions, pay raises, perks, etc. will come. The right attitude is everything.