There’s no question that every employer wants a dedicated staff, regardless of the industry. A great team will ensure you fulfil your mission by doing their work with passion, dedication, and precision – every single day.
Any entrepreneur will attest to the fact that having the best employees is the greatest asset for the entire business. However, how do you hire and retain good employees? Human resource managers know how difficult it is to find the right candidates. With every person having a better skill set than the next, hiring has become a complex and competitive process.
So, what qualities of a good employee do employers look for when hiring? Naturally, you want an ideal team member who fits in your company culture, works well with others and brings a lot of positive changes. Hiring the wrong individual can be catastrophic, not only to other team members but also to your business and clients.
Every recruiter looks for certain traits or qualities in potential candidates. Below, we’ve rounded up several key characteristics of a good employee that interest employers.
17 Essential Qualities of a Good Employee
1. A Good Communicator
Strong communication skills are one of the most desirable traits in an employee. This quality is an integral part of working with a team. You must be able to communicate in a lucid manner, whether in speaking or writing.
Some excellent communication skills include:
● Presentation skills
● Written communication skills
● Oral communication skills
● Valuing others’ opinions
Not only will communicating well enable you to relay information quickly and efficiently, but it also makes team collaboration a success. Additionally, a good communicator knows how to give constructive criticism. They also know when to stay silent and when to chip in, for instance, in a meeting.
On the one hand, ambition is admired in everyone, regardless of their level or status at work. As an employee, you should always be willing to go the extra mile in your daily tasks. You should also have a game plan for the future and aspire to become the best.
Employers want someone eager to learn new things in the industry and beyond. Just because you’re on the payroll, it doesn’t mean you can sit there and stagnate. Strive to be a forward-thinking employee. Be someone with some sense of internal motivation that drives you to improve and grow your influence within the company.
On the other hand, ambitious workers can be hard to retain. This presents a challenge to the employer who must provide a work environment that helps them thrive.
Employers want people they can depend on to do excellent work with minimal supervision. As an employee, you need to prove that you are reliable. Only then can your employer trust you to do your work well and on time.
Reliability is more than just meeting deadlines consistently. It’s about submitting quality work, showing up on time, and having the integrity to work well for the organization. Additionally, reliability means following instructions, informing your supervisor when you can’t make it, and taking your responsibilities seriously.
4. Team Player
The ability to work in a team structure is among the highly sought-after qualities of a good employee. Most companies have teams, and a lack of team spirit can interrupt a smooth workflow.
Teamwork goes hand in hand with effective communication, and a team that collaborates exceptionally well gets things done faster and efficiently. Relations among team members also improve, and individuals can air issues freely, encouraging positive feedback.
It’s not enough to show incredible results if you’re not a good team player. If you refuse to cooperate with others, you might create tension and resentment in the team. Ultimately, working as a team produces results that far outweigh the input of each team member individually.
Employers don’t want employees who stay on the sidelines. They are looking for someone who not only blends with the culture but also tries to improve it. It’s all about being adaptable and open-minded.
5. Critical Thinker
Critical thinking is one of the best words to describe a good employee. It’s a characteristic that will set you apart from others and may open opportunities high up in the chain. Critical thinkers can look at a problem and come up with a logical solution.
Critical thinking isn’t just a skill, but a habit developed with problem-solving. Thinking critically involves:
- Asking the right questions
- Identifying problems and providing helpful solutions
- Identifying business weaknesses and strengths
- Thinking out of the box
- Being keen on details
- Considering the consequences of your actions
When your boss identifies you as having critical thinking skills, you become an asset to the organization.
Confident employees receive constructive criticism as feedback they can use to improve themselves. They approach every assignment or project with a can-do attitude, which allows them to do their best work.
A confident employee works well with others and makes a great team player. They always seek out opportunities to grow and encourage their colleagues to succeed rather than slander them.
Self-confidence exudes action and influence, without which performance may be affected. Self-confident employees:
- are effective communicators since they don’t shy away from expressing their opinions,
- make great contributors,
- are role models,
- and can be great motivators.
Employers love someone who pays close attention to details and avoids stupid mistakes at work. Being detail-oriented can be helpful when solving problems. It can help you determine if you should speak your mind or stay silent at a meeting, just by reading body language.
This trait enables you to respect teammates’ boundaries and notice anything that’s out of place. When employers know you pay close attention to details, they can rely on you to notice patterns or issues that others don’t. Additionally, they can always trust you to do quality work every time.
8. Committed and Passionate
Great employees are committed and make sure that every task is done well. Possessing this trait shows that you’re passionate about your work and willing to accept work, no matter how challenging.
It’s the willingness to do more than what’s required of you and constantly exceed expectations. If you’re passionate about your job, it won’t feel like a heavy task, but something you enjoy doing. Thus, you’ll naturally put in your best effort because you love your work.
A passionate worker always stays up-to-date on issues affecting his/her industry. They spend extra time outside working hours to develop their skills to stay ahead of the competition.
9. Thinking Like a Manager
We can’t talk about the qualities of a good employee without touching on leadership skills. Thinking like a manager enables you to think about what needs to be done rather than waiting to be told.
While not every employee needs to have tremendous aspirations to be CEO, they should still be self-motivated and self-driven. You should always be willing to go above and beyond your job and do all it takes to accomplish tasks.
Employers always seek employees with strong work ethics. It’s a characteristic that sets a top performer apart from an average team member. The manager can rely on you to get the job done and trust you to deliver your best work on time.
What’s more, having the ability to inspire colleagues to improve and motivate them to become better portrays leadership potential. Who knows, you may just receive the next promotion.
10. Growth Mindset
Just as thinking like a leader can help catapult your career ahead, a growth mindset can open doors of opportunity for you. It’s the urge to always learn, even when you have accomplished most of your dreams. The growth mindset enables you to look at every failure and challenge as an opportunity to learn and become better.
It allows you to accept changes and strive for greater success. This skill set can help you build a unique environment that triggers new ideas and one that workmates will enjoy being a part of.
An accountable worker takes charge of his/her actions, results, and work. It’s a crucial characteristic that managers look for since they know they can delegate tasks without worry. Moreover, having accountability means you are committed to your work and communicate accurately about your projects and roles within them.
It involves owning your failures and finding ways to improve in the future. Part of being accountable in the workplace is dealing with conflicts amicably and offering a genuine apology.
Managers know that accountability in the workplace creates a fair working environment for all staff members. What’s more, it improves performance. It also leads to better commitment and increases employee participation and engagement. No wonder it is one of the leading characteristics of a good employee.
While being a good team player is essential to better performance, so does the ability to work independently. There are times you’ll be required to work on your own, and the manager will expect you to complete tasks on time.
To earn that trust, you must prove that you’re dependable. This doesn’t mean that you can’t ask for assistance when you hit a wall. However, you must show initiative and strive to work autonomously to produce the best results.
Employers value autonomous employees for their resourcefulness, strong focus, and creative nature.
Knowing your strengths and weaknesses makes you a good team player. Self-awareness enables you to accept your weakness and focus on other skills that make you a valuable team member.
Once you can distinguish where you shine and where you don’t, you can better fit in your team and become more efficient in your roles. It also allows you to ask to be reassigned if you feel you aren’t the best person to work on the project.
Multitasking might sound like a contradiction to working efficiently, but it’s a trait that employees must possess in today’s competitive world. You must have the ability to juggle several tasks while adhering to strict deadlines.
However, to ensure effective execution, you must be well organized and develop a routine that works for you. Start by creating a to-do list so you can keep track of everything you have lined up for the day.
Try to avoid distractions as much as you can since they can lead to procrastination. Learn to prioritize tasks and plan your day, so you can start with the hardest tasks first thing in the morning.
15. A Good Time Manager
Time management is undoubtedly one of the topmost qualities of a good employee. It’s the key to working productively and accomplishing all your tasks within the set timeframe. Proper time management skills enable you to work smarter rather than harder. It helps you get rid of procrastination by focusing on getting everything on your to-do list done.
Time management isn’t just about punctuality and submitting work on time. It’s knowing how to prioritize tasks and completing high-quality work. Once you master how to manage time, you’ll be able to accomplish more with less effort. Plus, your efficiency will improve without losing focus and momentum.
Many effective project managers and employees know that using time tracking software is the secret to staying on top of everything. Such a tool helps you track the time being spent on each task. Besides, it’ll help you manage your tasks better and keep your schedule on track.
If you’re looking for the best time tracker, check out Traqq. It’s simple to use, yet powerful and reliable. The tool logs every minute spent working, notifying you of every hour worked, so you can manage your time more efficiently. It also captures the apps and websites you frequently use to help you analyze how you spent your time at work.
Traqq generates reports that show your activity and productivity levels for a given period. You can use the data to improve your work habits or predict how much time you’ll take on future projects. By tracking your time, you’ll be able to cut off distractions and stay focused. It also becomes easier to plan your day and develop a routine.
Every employee needs to carry themselves professionally, no matter the industry. Lack of professionalism can damage work relationships and affect the performance and productivity of teams.
Professional individuals are presentable, responsible, and respectful. They also avoid gossip and communicate issues promptly. As an employee, it’s always wise to separate professional life from personal life.
A positive-minded individual can bring team members together and keep them focused. Having an optimistic mind keeps the team going, even when challenges present themselves. Employers want people with positive and happy behavior, so they can energize those around them and literally light up the workplace.
These are some of the best qualities of a good employee. A great team helps propel success within a company and positively influences colleagues and clients.
We hope this list provides you with a basic guide on the qualities you need to be a good fit for your company.