Every business owner who has hired a lot of people can tell story after story. We all have them. We’ve all heard the statement, hire for attitude, and train on skills. A few things are clear: when you hire someone with a good attitude, it usually offers you a better employee. I’ll take someone with a good attitude any day. Here are a few tips and strategies to hire people who have demonstrated integrity in their life.
Attitude is Everything
A common variance in the analysis of skill sets is attitude. If an individual is an eager learner vs. a passive or reluctant one, it sets the stage. However, a good attitude cannot overcome one’s ability to comprehend and retain information, but it goes a long way toward finding a place for this person on a team.
It’s easy to determine if someone has a good attitude by exploring how they’ve made decisions in their past. Don’t get blinded by someone who can talk a lot because that’s not always a good indicator. People with self-confidence can express themselves with dignity. They usually are not self-indulging. Being humble is a character trait of great team players.
Hire Only People Who Have Demonstrated Integrity
Integrity is a word thrown around pretty loosely today. A principle of integrity is doing the right thing even when others aren’t watching or acknowledged by others. It is a behavior that’s supported by an attitude.
By practicing the appropriate behaviors, a person can make improvements. It starts with do they want to improve, then it’s do they know how to improve. Too often, excuses are made for poor judgments or those that have happened over and over. You want people on the team who have learned from their past mistakes.
A Few Tips to Uncover Integrity
When interviewing potential new candidates for your company, pick those people who are good people. I’m not saying there aren’t exceptions, but more times than not, when you hire people who have a proven background in demonstrating integrity-based decisions, your odds of success improve significantly.
- How a person looks at winning and losing- Failing is part of being a winner. You have to fail to win. When someone expresses their failures and then what they learned from them, that goes a long way in learning who this person is. A key is that the individual chooses to look at the good in a situation but doesn’t ignore the bad. I like this because the person makes a choice after evaluating a situation vs. following the herd. They are aware of their own thoughts.
- A parent who apologizes to their child for yelling at them- this kind of parent recognizes that they aren’t always right. When a parent feels overwhelmed or disappointed by something their child has done, they will snap or give too harsh of a punishment. Giving an apology to your child when you’ve gone too far is something they deserve and is a sign of personal integrity.
- Being a boss means not always using your power- a boss with integrity has learned how to be effective through working with others. A boss who yields power over others to get things done is much less effective than a boss who keeps things organized and handles challenging situations with consideration of others. A boss with integrity highlights the staff’s efforts and downplays their own.
- Road rage- how you treat others is a real sign of having integrity. How one handles anger or situations that cause blood pressure to rise creates examples of how they conduct themselves in stressful situations.
- Volunteers typically have high integrity- people who volunteer at a church, animal shelter, or food pantry give to others unconditionally. This commitment of time and energy shows a certain level of integrity. I also “cautiously” add parents who volunteer to coach youth sports. As long as their intent is for the child vs. their own ego or reliving their past, then it qualifies.
Integrity isn’t a switch that just turns on. The good news is that we’re not born with it or without it. It is a behavior-based virtue that can be cultivated over time. We chose to have integrity by the choices we make about the type of person we want to be. Hiring people who have demonstrated integrity are easier to coach and develop.