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The Four Aces of Hiring

Patrick Valtin July 2012 issue of Skin Inc. magazine

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There are four aces in hiring. It is not about playing cards; it is about picking people who will help you win ... and won’t make you feel like you lost your last dollars playing poker. These aces are your most important hiring cards, yet they are not equal in value. You must know exactly what you want to measure—and following is the ideal sequence.

Performance mindset

This is your ace of diamonds. Detecting top players who are naturally high performers is your highest priority. The No. 1 reason to hire someone is to get the job done. When looking for the performance mindset, consider the following.

  • Does the applicant mention measurable results and achievements in her job application?
  • Are references listed that clearly support her achievements?
  • Does the applicant provide practical, results-oriented examples of some past performance, rather than mostly action-oriented ones?
  • Does the applicant feel at ease with your results-oriented questions?


This is your ace of hearts. Many call it positive attitude. Some people are naturally willing to work hard, to learn more and to do new things. Showing a positive attitude when problems arise can make all the difference in the working environment, especially when working in a team. There are a few good detectors that can help you separate top players with high willingness and the right attitude.

  • When asked, the applicant can easily provide examples of situations on the job where she had to demonstrate a positive attitude in order to solve a problem.
  • When challenged during a simulation or role-playing, the applicant shows evidence of willingness to respond and solve the problem.
  • The applicant can show evidence of willingness when she had to solve problems in order to help a group.


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