15 Must-have Employee Character Traits


A business is only as good as the people who are working within it. Hiring a dynamic and loyal team is one of the greatest accomplishments a business can achieve, but it does not happen by accident—it begins with planning from the start.

Hire hard and manage easy

Many times, businesses hire out of desperation rather than inspiration. The time, effort and financial commitment it takes to hire people who are not the right fit for the culture is much too costly. Following are 15 essential defining character traits and questions that can help you reach the essence of a candidate’s character to discover whether they are the right fit for your business.

1. Positive attitude. Describe a day when nothing seems to be going your way—how do you handle that type of situation? Now, describe a day where everything is going your way—how does that make you feel?

2. Continuing professional education. What role has continuing education played in your career? Do you have future continuing education plans?

3. Honesty and integrity. How did you handle a situation that had the potential to compromise your integrity? Would you change the way you dealt with a similar situation in the future?

4. Self-motivated. How do you see your future evolving? What are your daily practices to stay on track and stay focused?

5. Punctuality. How did you feel the last time you had to wait for someone? How do you feel when others have to wait for you?

6. Résumé. Is it complete and typo-free, and does it include important details? Who are the references and are they relevant?

7. Detail to service. Describe a positive service experience you have had with a past client. What has been the best service experience you have ever received and why?

8. Self-presentation. What does “dress for success” mean to you?

9. Team player. How have you felt when working with teams? What role do you usually play on a team?

10. Great communicator. What makes you want to listen to someone intently? What skills do you possess that make others listen to you?

11. Handles conflict well. Describe an uncomfortable situation in which you had to handle a conflict. Was there a way that situation could have been turned into a positive experience?

12. Passionate about work. What are the elements about work that you like the best? What are the aspects of work that do not appeal to you?

If you had the ability to alter the parts of work that do not appeal to you, how would you change them?

13. Open to change. How do you feel when you walk into a store where everything is moved into different areas than you’re accustomed?

14. Looking for a career. What do you see your professional future looking like in the next five years? What goals have you set for yourself? How will you accomplish them?

15. Consistent work habits. Are there any personal best practices you apply to your workday to stay consistent and focused?

Once you hire a team member, the only acceptable reason for her to leave should be if an opportunity for career growth has presented itself. Pay attention to your intuition! It is only when you try to rationalize or talk yourself into things that you get into trouble.

Bryan+DurocherBryan Durocher, the author of Wake Up ... Live the Life You Love ... in Beauty (Little Seed Publishing, 2004), has been an expert for Health Journal TV, Life and Leisure TV and a contributor to NBC South Florida Today. He is the founder of Durocher Enterprises and Essentials Spa Consulting and, in 2008, was named one of the “Top 20 People to Know in the Beauty Industry” by GCI magazine.


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