Skills Can Be Taught, Personality Is Forever
"Skills can be taught, personality is forever".
Employers are putting an increasing focus on employee personality to ensure that they can work within the team framework, and have a better understanding of the job requirements. An excellent write up in the SeattlePI goes in detail on the subject, and is something that I have noticed that more and more clients are doing. They want people who can hit the ground running, work within the confines of the job, and get along with people.
The standard IT problem of knowledge hoarding and non sociability is quickly becoming a liability even if you are absolutely brilliant. Something that I am fond of telling all the people that I interview with is to tell me what this statement means:
"It does not matter how brilliant you are, if you cannot communicate effectively no one will know how smart you really are".
"We'd rather miss a good one than hire a bad one," said Rackspace Chief Executive Lanham Napier. The 1,900-person computer server hosting company is divided into 18- to 20-person teams. One team is so close, the whole group shows up to help when one member moves into a new home, Napier said. Job interviews at the San Antonio-based company last all day, as interviewers try to rub away fake pleasantness. Source: SeattlePI Team interviews that last all day are not just a Microsoft institution anymore; these kinds of interviews actually work because people on both sides of the interview table learn a lot about the job. The requirements for the job and the team can see if there is going to be a good fit.
The flip side to that is the idea of "Like hires like", so if you are a non sociable person, odds are pretty well given that if the department is made up of people with a non social way of doing business, then odds are good that you will be hired.
The key to finding a job is to make sure that your personality, goals, wants and needs match the needs of the group hiring you. While some focus on the team as a source of innovation and work environment, some companies do not have the same focus. They are looking for people who can fit in to whatever environment is the one that the company has developed for itself. Personality is important, and fit is very important, finding the right kind of fit goes a long way in job stability.
When interviewing for a job, it is important to find a place that you are comfortable in, and employers have the same right. They need to know that however your personality has formed, that it fits in well with the rest of the people on the team. Time spent in reducing the friction of a group is time lost when good things could be done. The whole point, make sure that you and the company you are hiring with have the same outlook, good or bad, to ensure that you will fit into the group, regardless of personality type.
But with businesses ever increasing focus on being likable, approachable, and smart, computer geeks of all stripes are going to have a harder time finding a job, in a company that emphasizes the "likable and approachable" part of the job interview.
View All Articles by Dan Morrill
Our Daily Email of Breaking eBusiness News
About the Author:
Dan Morrill has been in the information security field for 18 years, both
civilian and military, and is currently working on his Doctor of Management.
Dan shares his insights on the important security issues of today through
his blog, Managing
Intellectual Property & IT Security, and is an active participant in the
ITtoolbox blogging community.
WebProNews RSS Feed
More Expert Articles Articles