The Most Valuable Skill Every Recruiter Overlooks


I have a secret for all of you.

A four hundred person company doesn’t run on being organized.

How do I know? Because I’m the CEO of one.

The number one skill employees need to have?

Empathy. To be a great leader is to be a great listener instead of a talker.

Think about it. When a project isn’t getting done, or somebody is unhappy, how do you move forward? Do you go into the solution right away? Absolutely not. Before you fix the problem, you need to figure out what the problem actually is. And you’re not going to figure that out by walking into a room and taking charge immediately. Why are we 2 weeks behind? Why is something at a standstill? The way you win is by listening to the reasons WHY things aren’t going well. Once you have assessed those, you can jump into problem solving mode.

There is no direct link between realizing there is a problem and the solution. The middle takes time, and the middle is where compassion comes in to play. You apply empathy, and take the time to understand everything going on there. You become known to everyone as the person that “gets it”. What you definitely don’t want to do is walk into a room with a plan already figured out, saying “I’m going to guide this”. You want to end up guiding it with your EARS rather than with your MOUTH. That is something most project manager oriented people only learn later in life and realize is the key factor.

Sometimes a manager is organized, intelligent, and all around a great person, but they want to TALK IT to success. You can’t talk something to a result. You need to step back, shut your mouth, and listen. In the moment you may feel the need to talk and bring explanations and ideas, but in that moment, your silence is crucial. This is a drop down, flip it and reverse it scenario. It’s a Missy Elliott structure (and yes, that is a business term I am just now going to coin).

People with natural understanding will automatically take this stance. They are great listeners, great at chilling out and reflecting. When hiring for a team, specifically if you’re looking for project managers and people who will be close to the organizing of assignments, look for this skill and you will not be sorry.

But you know what? Forget it just being for project managers. Forget I even said that. Every employee you hire should be willing to listen. No one ever solved a problem by themselves. Bottom line: this is the single most important thing you can hire for in your company. Fill your walls with compassion and the humanity will follow. And guess what follows humanity? Success, people.

Rethinking company strategy? Keep this in your back pocket and don’t forget about it. Could be the most valuable info you get ☺

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