A Few Important Qualities Of A Good Employee

Key to EmployeesBuilding the right workforce is crucial to expansion and sustainability. No matter what technical expertise the candidates hold, it’s important they have the qualities of a good employee prior to hiring, as they will have a large influence on the future of your company.

Just as small businesses are the backbone of America, your employees act as the backbone of your business. Unfortunately, quality employees aren’t always easy to find. Attempting to obtain them can be expensive. Reported by a Career Builder study, one-third of the 2,700 business employers surveyed had made a poor hire in the last year, and 41% calculate that merely one bad hire could cost the business as much as $25,000. For higher salary workers, that could be even more. At this price point, it’s an error most smaller businesses can’t afford to make.

Searching out the candidates who may have the skill sets, schooling, and experience you need is essential. However, finding that genuinely fantastic employees who will be an essential part of your business and help grow it may require looking beyond the basics. It may require that you seek characteristics and abilities that aren’t listed on just every other resume.

Identifying characteristics that Make Great Employees

Approved Employee ApplicationTo determine if a job candidate has the potential to be an excellent employee, you should look beyond the application as well as the common job interview. It can be hard to determine if a person is actually “passionate” or “goal oriented” within the brief job interview, and frequently these decisions are very subjective.

Fortunately, you don’t have to reinvent the wheel. Many wonderful minds have got enough time to contemplate good job interview questions. Laszlo Bock, Google’s SVP of People Operations, recommends using the Performance Based Interviewing (PBI) questions developed by the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs. PBI questions are those situational questions. They’re meant to create a connection between past behavior and future behaving. Below are some traits PBI questions can identify in your potential hire.


To build your company successfully, you’ll want to have objectives, which should be outlined in your business plan.  Your employees are essential to helping you reach those objectives. Great employees understand they’re part of the mission. Regardless of where they are in the hierarchy, they matter. As such, they tend to be objective-oriented and take pride in their work. They’re often less concerned with getting caught within the ruin of office politics or letting their ego get in the way of excelling. Instead, they focus more on getting the job finished and achieving the objective.

Communication/Team Work SkillsThree people conversing

Organizations are developed by fantastic employees who are able to work effectively within a collective. Excellent communication skills has a lot to do with being part of a successful team. It isn’t just about articulating suggestions coherently. Communication is not having the loudest voice. Rather, communication is a give and take. It requires the ability to listen attentively to others in order to create positive interactions. Those interactions may be with co-workers in sales, marketing, PR, as well as partners outside of the company.


No one has the passion for a company like that of the small business owner. However, your employees should still be passionate about the work they do and in the company itself. Identifying passion for work or the company during a job interview can be challenging. Ideally, all of your interviewees appear to be excited about the position. If they don’t, it’s certainly an instant red light. However your task is to distinguish real passion from fake passion. Most importantly, to discover the individuals who are able to use their passion in the work they do.

It makes me think of the facility cleaning lady we had at one time. She was so diligent. She cleaned the light fixtures, left the bathroom spic and span, really just made the building look wonderful. She’d even talk about the tasks she accomplished around the building from time to time. Why? Because they were important to her. She was passionate about her job. And being the type of person who hates to clean but loves cleanliness, I loved her for it! For me, she was one of the most important people who worked for the company, because she made coming to work less stressful.

Organized As well as Detail Oriented

Green File Amongst Black For Getting Office OrganizedMy boss works in an organized mess, as do I. I also work with individuals who leave the office with a clean desk or have everything organized in neat little folders. Whatever their style, organization is the key. They should be organized to the point they’re not taking on the role of the Absent Minded Professor or costing the company valuable time with their inability to keep track of tasks or materials.

Being detailed oriented is just as important, as mistakes can take time to correct and may also require additional expenditures on top of the time. Keep in mind, you’re hiring employees to ease the workload all around. Having to micromanage an employee who isn’t organized enough to do their work properly or fail to pay attention to details rather defeats the purpose of expanding your workforce.


Clients don’t always know what they want at the start of a project, so are prone to changing their minds. Beyond clients, business itself can be unpredictable. Situations beyond your control can affect your clearly laid out path. Like you have to make adjustment as time goes on, so do your employees. You’ll want to find employees that have the capability to adjust to unexpected scenarios and grow with your company.


Creativity ImageFinally, businesses can benefit from having employees that think outside the box. The world is changing quickly. So, having a creative team to help you keep pace or even stay ahead ahead of the competition is invaluable. Often new ideals come in just by hiring an employee. One benefit of the new hires is the ability to get new suggestions and concepts that haven’t already been floated through your current team. You can help foster creativity by keeping the lines of communication open and encouraging the expression of new ideas.

If you’re ever able to come across a good employee with all or even some of the characteristics above, hold onto them. Keep in mind, the way you treat your employees and the culture you help create can turn a once excellent employee into a substandard worker. Locating great talent is one skill, while keeping them is another. So take care of good employees and increase your chances of running a successful business.


What methods do you use to ensure you higher the best fit for your company?