Desired Characteristics of an Employee

This list was developed when I was at TRW. I facilitated a group of IT employees, IT customers and human resources to create a list of characteristics of a desirable employee.

1. Believes in “we” before “I” (except for accountability). Team player

a) Participative leadership – interdependence through empowerment, freeing up and serving others
b) Contribute, learn from and work with other team members
c) Share responsibility – feel as responsible as manager for team performance. An aid to other team members, does not take “it’s not my job” attitude.
d) Aligned on purpose of why team exists and the function it serves
e) High communication – creating a climate of trust and open, honest communication, ask and respond to questions
f) Future focused – seeing change as an opportunity for growth
g) Focused on goal/task – keeping meetings, interactions and effort focused on results
h) Creative talents – applying individual and team talents and creativity
i) Rapid Response – identifying and acting on opportunities

2. Dedicated to personal, departmental and company continuous improvement.
3. Success driven through personal pride.
4. Commitment to personal and professional excellence.
5. Passionate and able to learn new things.
6. Self-motivated. Does not need close monitoring. Willing to put forth extra effort.
7. Instills a confidence in people that they can count on you. Meets commitments.
8. Getting the job done takes precedence over “watching the clock”.
9. Can balance a sense of urgency versus attention to detail.
10. Is sensitive to waste and genuinely seeks to eliminate it.
11. Works toward standard work – efficiency and repeatable quality.
12. Organized, can handle multiple tasks.
13. Understands quality and produces quality work.
14. Learns from mistakes.
15. Willing to delegate when necessary.
16. Dedicated to empowering users with technology.
17. Willing to give and accept positive criticism/feedback without being defensive.
18. Believes that “the buck stops here”; does not look to lay blame.
19. Accountable, takes ownership of projects, follow-up and follow through.
20. Works toward a win-win situation instead of adversarial.
21. Is assertive, not aggressive.
22. Open to changes; is flexible.
23. Can accept constraints and maximizes resources (positive approach, seeks to make “lemonade from lemons”).
24. Handles adversity with a positive manner.
25. Can detect problems before they occur or need takes preventive actions to prevent occurrence.
26. Can resolve problems effectively and in an efficient manner.
27. Asks what he/she can do to help; proactive, takes initiative.
28. Understands the customer goal, objectives, needs to be able to best serve the customer and the company.
29. Respected by the organization.

John I Sommer