Lencioni: There are three required virtues that make someone an ideal team player. Those virtues are humble, hunger and smarts. The most important of those virtues is humility. The ultimate foundation of being a team player is a person being willing and able to put the team’s interests above his or her own. Only a truly humble person can do this effectively. The second virtue required is hunger, the desire to work hard, make a difference and get things done. The third and final virtue of an ideal team player is something I call smarts. It has nothing to do with intelligence, however, but is all about social awareness and interpersonal common sense. Ideal team players, in addition to being humble and hungry, demonstrate smarts with their ability to understand their colleagues and work with them effectively.
<p>The Source for Organizational Health
HIRING IDEAL TEAM PLAYERS:
AN INTERVIEW GUIDE TO HELP YOU
IDENTIFY CANDIDATES WHO ARE
HUMBLE, HUNGRY AND SMART
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Insight: Look for more mentions of we than I. Of course, it isn’t about being so simplistic as
to count the responses. In the event that someone refers to himself or herself individually more
than as a member of a team, probe for whether he or she was working alone or with others.
Question: What are the most important accomplishments of your career?
Insight: Look for whether the candidate celebrates that embarrassment or is mortified by
it. Humble people generally aren’t afraid to tell their unflattering stories because they’re
comfortable with being imperfect. Also, look for specifics and real references to the candidate’s
Question: What was the most embarrassing moment in your career? Or the
Insight: Look for specifics about how the candidate accepted responsibility, what they
learned from it, and if they actually acted on what was learned.
Question: How did you handle that embarrassment or failure?
Insight: Yes, this is a seemingly tired question, but it’s still a useful one. The key is to look for
answers that are real and a little painful. Candidates who present their weaknesses as strengths
(“I take on too much” or “I have a hard time saying no”) are often afraid to acknowledge real
shortcomings. To avoid this, it’s a good idea to coach candidates with prompts like: “I really want
to know what you’d like to change about yourself, or better yet, what your best friends would say
you need to work on.” The key to the answer is not what their weaknesses are (unless of course
the candidate is an axe murderer), but if they’re comfortable acknowledging something real.
Question: What is your greatest weakness?
Insight: Look for and ask for specifics. Humbl