3 Things To Look For When Hiring

Hiring the right person for your business is critical. The wrong hire can cost you time. It can cost your business lots of money. It can also have a negative impact on the team.

I have been hiring staff for over 20 years. And, I have made some great picks and some didn’t turn out.

When you interview, some human resource professionals will tell you to use behavior interviewing techniques to screen staff. Some may tell you use personality testing. Everyone has an opinion.

I personally like to simplify the process. Focus on what is most important. Here are my 3 key qualities I look for when interviewing managers.


So, what is integrity to me? It’s all about having strong moral principles and being honest. I am looking for employees that are going to help me and the company win. When there are mistakes, they will own up to them and have the confidence to speak up.

I would always prefer a manager that is brutally honest about what is working (and what’s not). I really don’t think authoritative management styles work anymore. I am not an insecure leader. I don’t need constant praise. For me, I get more satisfaction seeing my team do well. Watching my team hit the performance targets. Making more money. And, Growing with the company. 

At the end of the day, your managers need to trust you. And you need to TRUST them. You need to ask yourself, will they do whatever it takes to meet and exceed performance targets? Will they find solutions or hide? At the same time, I believe it’s MY RESPONSIBILITY to do whatever it takes to help my manager grow? It’s a 2 way street.


Grit is having the perseverance to get things done regardless of obstacles or set backs.  Do they give up easily? Or, do they keep fighting and find a solution? Are they proactive? Challenges come up. That’s part of business. That’s part of life. You may not have control over the challenges that cross your desk. But, you have control over you handle it.

Do they have the confidence to approach you and collaborate to fix the problem?

Are they goal driven and competitive? Do they have short term and long term career goals and strategies to get there?

People Skills

Anthony Robins says the quality of your life is a result of the quality of your communication. Having the ability to inspire and motivate is critical. Can they control their emotions?

Workers usually leave a company because they are not feeling appreciated.  A bad front line manager can impact lots of workers and other managers.

I ask questions to see how they coach employees. Do they sell their ideas and motivate the staff? Or do they just bark orders? Do they build strong win/win relationships with their employees? When they see the employee do something right, do they bring it up? Or, do they just coach when something is wrong?

Obviously you are also looking at other qualities like job specific skills, education, knowledge base, past results etc. But, I do believe Integrity, Grit and People skills are the 3 most important qualities in any new manager.

Any feedback? Let me know.

About the Author Ken Matthews

Ken Matthews is a veteran Canadian entrepreneur and business executive with over 30 years experience.

follow me on: