You could have the most experienced, most successful candidate in the world but if they are constantly butting heads with others, you can bet that your candidate won’t stay with the company long. Not every employee or coworker in your office is a team player– or even know how to be part of a team. In an office environment, this skill is absolutely necessary but not always apparent. How can you learn which candidates are these kinds of people during the interview process? You might not think that working with a group is vital for every role, but even if someone doesn’t work with others that frequently, it’s a crucial trait that every employee must possess.

What’s a team player?

There are many definitions of a team player. The longstanding universal one goes like this: someone who goes along and always supports the company program. Many find this definition old and outdated due to the ever-changing workplace. In today’s world, it could be defined as someone who provides meaningful feedback, asks the right questions without creating friction between coworkers, and prioritizing their team over their personal success.

Knowing how to interview is the best way to assess a job candidate’s teamwork skills. What are some essential qualities that you should look for in an interview that can ensure you’ll hire a strong candidate?

Qualities of a team player

Reliable. Ensuring candidates are reliable will not only help you make sure they complete their work on time, but also those other individuals can rely on them, too. Ask about deadlines or a time a coworker needed them to come through for them, despite being under pressure for their own responsibilities.

An active listener. Folks must have the patience to listen and understand the perspectives of other group members. Ask candidates about a time they received constructive feedback and how they handled it. An active listener will take the time to digest the feedback and not act defensively.

Effective communicator. It’s essential that they are clearly and directly able to express their ideas but in a respectful manner. Ask questions about speaking up in a meeting or how they handled a tough situation.

Cooperative. Team players know how to be nice in the sandbox. They work well with others to achieve common goals. They focus on productive solutions, not dominating or fighting against the team. Ask situational questions, like ones about a time an idea was shot down and ask about their reaction.

Participates. A person has to show active participation in different events organized by the company such as activities, discussions, and more. Find out if they’re someone who expresses their ideas and participates in ones they might not agree with.

Committed. A team player has to show complete dedication towards work and accomplishment of goals for success. You can learn more about candidates’ commitment by paying close attention to the questions you ask regarding reliability.

Flexible. Flexibility is another necessary trait. You must conveniently adapt to novel changes that have occurred based on the direction or feedback of others. Are they stubborn? Do they let lost battles go or hang on to them relentlessly?

Respectful. Lastly, a team player must be considerate enough to treat everyone with courtesy. Do they insult others and their ideas? Do they talk down to their peers?

Finding all the essential qualities will ensure success in not only whatever department they are placed in, but also for the company as a whole.

Recruiting the whole person

The best candidate won’t just have the skills you’re looking for. They’re a catalyst that helps drive your group’s success. We’re able to find your catalyst. Here at Qualigence, we hire the whole person, not just their knowledge, skills, and abilities so you find the right person the first time. It’s the power of people analytics, and we know how to harness it.

The right people, empowered to perform.