When you prepare to submit an application to a prospective company, do you get nervous? Maybe you start wondering what the company is really looking for or if you have the right skills for the position. Those are normal questions to think about and can help you prepare for the potential interview. At the same time, we want to encourage and hopefully relieve some of your stress. Your character plays a far bigger role in your next job than you might expect. 

As recent industry trends have shown, and many managers can confirm, technical skills are no longer the defining predictor of job success. Candidates may know how to use certain software programs, handle a budget, or execute a task, but will their character add value to their company culture?  

Employers are looking for specific values and personality traits to see if they will be a match for their coworkers, superiors, clients, and subordinates. Especially after the first round of candidate selection, employers are no longer asking if an applicant can do the job. They’re now asking: how well will they fit in here? Do these candidates share our work ethic? Are they collaborative and driven like we are? Are they open to new ideas or purely work by-the-book? Are the candidates’ personalities right for the team? 

Once the pool of applicants has been narrowed to include only those who possess the necessary skill sets, attitude-oriented questions will come into play to bring about more telling resultsAs each candidate is reviewed, the managers may remove some of the skill-focused inquiries and replace them with questions like:

  • This job may involve (insert the most challenging aspect of the position) regularly. How do you feel about that? 
  • Describe an interpersonal conflict you have experienced in the workplace. How did you respond?
  • What is your favorite aspect about this line of work? How about your least favorite? 
  • Have you ever worked with a team who has failed to meet goal or deadline? What did you learn from this experience and how have you applied those lessons? 
  • When you have the option, do you typically enjoy more working with a team cooperatively or engaging in personal competition? 
  • Are you frustrated by questions with no single correct answer and problems with no single resolution? Or do you find these situations enjoyable? 

Your answers should be as genuine, positive and reaffirming as possible. When you are comfortable responding to these types of questions, you will put yourself in the right mindset for the interview and relieve some of your nervous jitters. More importantly, assertive answers will demonstrate to the managers why you are a great choice for their company. If you can showcase your professional skills with a respectable character and an optimistic attitude, you are bound to find the company who will be the right fit for your expertise and personality. 

For more examples, contact the experts at Palmer Group. Whether you are a candidate looking for a new position or a client seeking a new hire, we’ll give you the tools you need in your career journey! 

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