6 qualities to help you get a job

Judith Humphrey, founder of The Humphrey Group and author of several books about leadership, told Fast Company about the qualities that need to be demonstrated if you really want to get a job.

6 qualities to help you get a job

Tatyana Petruschenkova

Companies hire employees even during a recession. And, given the competitive market, it is important to make sure that you stand out among the candidates. Humphrey spoke with senior executives at Harqen, a company offering HR products and services, to identify the six qualities employers are looking for today.

The Harqen database stores information on more than five million interviews. On its basis, the company draws conclusions about the important qualities of applicants for business. Harqen tests potential employees for these characteristics and uses algorithms that mimic interviewers to speed up the hiring process.

How does a machine identify important qualities? She scans interview responses and looks for specific words and phrases.

Here are six key characteristics that employers want to see that you can demonstrate when selecting for the company.

Confidence is a must for candidates. If you have a problem with this, you are out of the game.

To determine a candidate’s level of confidence, Harqen’s machine learning algorithm looks for words and actions that indicate that you have achieved certain goals and are not afraid to talk about them. These words: “created”, “built”, “achieved”, “realized” and so on. For example, if you are asked about your current job, you might say: “I led the team through a pandemic and created an even stronger, more flexible organization.”

Stay away from passive words. This suggests that other people acted, and you were a witness, a led. These include expressions such as “they told me”, “they saw in me”, “they told me” and so on. Even the phrase “I was a manager” is less advantageous than “I managed”. Speak not about the role that you were given, but about what you have achieved in this role.

The second quality that employers seek in job seekers is enthusiasm. Harqen CTO Mark Unack says the best way to be enthusiastic is to use positive expressions. Harqen uses a positivity index that ranges from -5 to +5. At the top of the scale are the words “absolutely”, “amazing”, “super”, as well as “love”, “relationships” and “team”. These expressions show a strong positive attitude.

At the bottom of the scale are negative words such as “disgust,” “refusal,” “insult,” and “terrible.” Always exhibit events in a positive way, because employers are looking for such people.

According to Unak, the third important quality is the ability to influence what is happening. Such people know how to attract others, inspire and convince.

How does a machine determine this quality? She analyzes the pronouns. Most people speak mostly about themselves and often use the words “me”, “mine” or “myself”. People who know how to influence others shift their focus to the group to which they belong. They use the words “we,” “ours,” “ourselves,” and so on.

Therefore, if you want to demonstrate this quality, do not say “I did it” or “I did it.” Say: “We, as a team, have shown ourselves perfectly while staying focused during the COVID-19 pandemic.”

The ability to think analytically does not mean that you should go into details about each situation or project. But you must show that you can analyze situations and find ways to solve problems.

How does a machine detect such quality in a candidate? It takes into account clusters of words that show the accuracy of your thinking. For example, if you are an analyst, you can say: “These are facts that are directly related to the situation.”

The opposite of the analytical thinker is a narrative thinker who is less likely to concentrate on facts, but focus on history. He may say: “We have excellent facts if you want to hear them.”

  • When you answer questions in an interview, be careful and accurate. For example, if you leave your work for a new opportunity, you can say: “I liked my position for several reasons. Here they are”.

According to Tim Ichlefeld, President and CEO of Harqen, every employer wants employees to help him solve problems and grow his business.

Harken’s algorithm carefully looks at the candidate’s answer to the frequently asked question: “Have you ever been in a situation where you had to solve an unexpected problem, and if so, what did you do and what happened as a result?” Candidates must have a ready answer.

  • If you are preparing for an interview, think about how you solved the sudden problem, and remember every step in the process. Then write down and learn your answer. Unak says it can make up to 10% of a company’s decision about you as a candidate.

The last success factor for any novice employee is the ability to show that you really want to work in a company that conducts an interview with you.

This can be determined by the response to the question: “Why do you want to work for us?” According to Unak, this is the most important question at any interview, and it needs to be considered in advance. The answer to it, together with the answer to the question from the fifth paragraph, can sometimes amount to 100% of the company’s decision on hiring.

  • Make sure that your answer indicates that you deeply respect the company you are contacting, you know its business well, you want to contribute and see how you can do it.


Cover photo: fizkes, Shutterstock