Thursday, May 19, 2016

Hiring Tip: 5-Characteristics of Good Team Members

A key aspect of creating and managing a team is finding the right folks. I have been on good teams and bad ones, and for a while I couldn't figure out why things just didn't work out sometimes. I attributed the lack of cohesion mostly to my personal failings and personality quirks; experience has made me wiser - it wasn't just me.

There are two characteristics that all good teams on which I have been have in common:
1. A management team that is empathetic and cares about the growth of its people;
2. People with domain expertise and an intangible "joie de vivre"

Tons of ink has been spilled on what makes for a great management team. Even more on how to become even better than great at managing teams. I won't attempt to better the work of the good professors at Harvard Business School. Instead, I am going to demystify the "intangible" by sharing a simple rule with you that I call the "Vowels Rule":
A: Accountable
E: Energetic; relentless
I: Intelligent
O: Outcome focused
U: Upstanding and trustworthy
There you have it; my very own rule! As the hiring manager, devise questions and scenarios for your screening/interview process that gauge your prospective team member using these five (5) yardsticks.

Had I known this when I started out in 2001, I might have made better career moves. More importantly, had I known what to look for, I would have consistently hired people on my team with these intangible qualities, increasing my teams' cohesion. It's all good though; I am in a great spot now. Knowing is everything... Q.E.D.


There is another key aspect of career development and growth that wanted to share with you. The pundits say your career is driven mostly by your capabilities. They are wrong. Your career is more a product of how your boss both perceives and goes to bat for you than anything else. More on that in my next post.

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