Build great Teams – People management

Use Attributes To Hire People Who Fit

Use Attributes To Hire People Who Fit

In previous articles I explained what I mean by cultural fit and why you want to take it into account when you hire. How do you reduce the risk of hiring someone who is not the right fit for your company? First identify the attributes the person will need to be successful in the job in your company. Then interview to find out if the person has those attributes.

Determine Attributes Before You Hire

Consider each role you might want to hire for separately. First, identify the top ten attributes a person would need to be successful in the role in your company. This might be a mixture of technical and non-technical attributes.

Don’t forget to identify attributes separately for each job role. You might find there are common attributes across different job roles that relate to your company culture. There will also be some differences depending on the requirements of the job. A salesperson needs different attributes to an engineer. Both need to fit within your company overall.

Step back and think about all the attributes you possibly can so you don’t miss out any relevant ones. Look at anyone who does the role now. Ask yourself what they bring to your company that makes them successful. Also look at it the other way, is there anything they do that prevents them from being super-successful? Then look for the opposite attribute and decide if that is one of the top ten.


Once you have defined the top ten attributes for each role, prioritize them. Think about which are the most crucial for the role versus which would be useful but are not critical. When you interview candidates you probably won’t have time to ask about all the attributes you’ve identified. Make sure you know which are the most critical so you can interview for those first.

One way to do this is to compare them in pairs and decide for each pair which is more important. Do this exercise for all pairings of attributes to determine ranking. Once you have a list in order of importance, take note of the top three or four. Those are the ones to focus on in the interview.

Interview Before You Hire

Once you have your prioritized list, develop behavioural interview questions for the most critical three or four attributes. Using these questions will allow you to determine if your candidates have these attributes. Putting the time and effort in to get the right people on board will pay off overall.

My Question To You

How do you recruit? Do you determine all the attributes you’re looking for before you start? If this is something you would like to discuss or would like some help with, contact me at You can also buy my book Accelerate to Team Success which is available as a paperback or on Kindle.


About the Author:

Nikki Faulkner photo Dr Nikki Faulkner founded Mulberry Bush Consulting to work with business leaders and their teams to make the 'People' side of their business as effective as possible. Mulberry Bush Consulting's specialty is helping small businesses who are new to having employees and helping businesses who are growing rapidly and increasing their employee-base at a rate that is creating a significant challenge.

You are not alone and we can help.

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