What Makes a Great Employee: Insights from a Hiring ManagerFeatured

kuan's profile thumbnail
Thank you Tina for sharing your story with us! Hiring managers on Elpha, what qualities do you think make the best employees?
quinneyeQ's profile thumbnail
Hi Tina! Thanks so much for sharing! "Sometimes you end up with someone who is genuinely talented, but cannot work with others. Known as the “brilliant jerk,” they can add tons of value, but only if placed in the right position where their brilliance can be tapped without negatively impacting the rest of the team." -- This is so interesting, and I'm sure we've all had that one co-worker (or co-founder or boss) that fits this description! I'm wondering if you have any go-to methods for dealing with a "brilliant jerk"?
TinaLin's profile thumbnail
Start by taking a deep breath. :-)Seriously, the key is to put them in a position where they can leverage their strengths. The reason you put up with them is because they are GREAT at certain things. Focus their role on where they can be great and reward them for their brilliance.
Telle's profile thumbnail
Awesome advice @TinaLin!
gabriela's profile thumbnail
Hello :), I enjoyed reading this post. I mostly agree with team members that don't act like they are in a team and don't want to help the team. If the "brilliant jerk" is in a team, I find it hard to find a scenario in which the team/product/culture is not affected. A lot of non jerk people can do what that individual can. I am guessing there are very few instances in which that person's skills are *unique*.One thing that I think must be clarified, the "silent hero" is a great person to have on a team, but if that person is not promoted/remunerated then it can go on the other side of things which is taking advantage of that person. I think we all know there could be "silent requests" to do extra work sometimes, and I find it absolute best to acknowledge that person in the team (if what they do affects the team and helps the team) and reward them instead of just enjoying this behavior.And I truly do believe that work-life balance should have a normal, decent trajectory. Holidays, vacations, personal time etc should be treated with utmost respect from the person itself and the company. Here i think it's important to show by doing, from the upper management to employees.As an employee, I think the win-win situation between me and a company depends part on the company and part on me. I will do my best in the agreed situation and I expect the same from them.I wrote an post on dev.to about an employee perspective regarding team managers and no. 12 is related to the above idea. https://dev.to/gabriela/how-to-be-a-great-it-manager-in-software-from-a-team-member-s-point-of-view-37fo
TinaLin's profile thumbnail
Thanks for your comments. Totally agree about the need to recognize the "silent hero." Not everyone even sees that there are silent heroes, so those of us who do must recognize and make sure others are aware of who they are and what they do.Also completely agree on the need to create a win-win situation, for both employee and company. Must work for both sides, otherwise it's not the right fit.
Bronwyn's profile thumbnail
Thanks Tina! What interview questions do like to you ask to identify high performers?
TinaLin's profile thumbnail
Hi Bronwyn, some of the questions I like to ask: 1) something they are proud of and why 2) a situation they found to be challenging and how they handled it 3) what areas they are interested in developing in their next role 4) what environment do they work best in 5) how would your work colleagues describe you - the good and the bad.I also like to give candidates some sort of "assessment" to submit - evaluate a key path of the website, evaluate our social media, etc. I recently had a candidate attend one of our team meetings, and I was impressed by how she interacted with the team and contributed during the discussion.
Zana's profile thumbnail
Bookmarked. Great insights!
abiliu's profile thumbnail
insightful post, thanks for sharing.these types of qualities that exist outside of hard skills, off the CV tend to occur less with technical recruiting and engineer types, in my experience. any advice on how to identify the "silent heroes" among those? especially for early stage start-ups where equity is in question. thanks again!
TinaLin's profile thumbnail
Some of my best "silent heroes" have been engineers/technical team members. References often will tell you - listen to the words they use to describe the person. Talk to the manager, peers and subordinates. You can also sometimes tell by talking to the candidate directly. Engage them in conversation outside of the typical interview questions, and you might be able to get a sense for what's important to them.