There are certain qualities, attributes, and characteristics that make someone qualify as a good employee.
These qualities would make any job seeker desirable to employers.
Furthermore, these good qualities will also increase your job seeker’s chances of getting employed by the best organizations around.
Not only that, but exhibiting good qualities as an employee would also job seekers opportunities to get ahead of others in their chosen career paths.
What if you are a business owner or employer?
Also, why should you care about the qualities of a good employee?
We’ll answer these questions and more in this blog post.
Qualities Of A Good Employee
Well, hiring good employees has the potential to be the difference-maker for your business positively.
On the other hand, if you amass a group of bad employees, it can negatively affect your business.
Additionally, hiring good employees can help contribute to the perfect work culture in your organization.
It can also assist you in retaining employees and avoid a high rate of employee turnover.
However, finding and hiring good employees is no easy task for a business owner or the human resource department.
The fact that the labor market is saturated with so many job seekers makes the task even more challenging.
There are so many candidates as prospective employees for your company, and it might not be easy selecting the good ones.
Aside from technical skills, there are so many qualities and attributes you should look for when choosing employees.
And that is what we are focusing on in this article.
With a good structure to assess job applicants against these qualities, you will be hiring good employees.
We will delve into those qualities shortly, but first, let’s understand who a good employee is.
Qualities of a Good Employee – Who is a Good Employee?
We can refer to a good employee as an individual hired by an organization to fit into a job position and fit in superbly.
One area in which a good employee fits into a firm is by aligning with the organizations’ goals, objectives, vision, and even culture.
This means that such an employee would possess the right technical skills and talents for the job.
But being a good employee goes beyond just having the technical skills.
In addition to that, good employees also need to have the right personality for the organization they represent.
This is where the qualities and attributes come in.
What really makes an employee stand out as good or even great is not the skills but rather the personality.
This personality influences employees’ work ethic, affects the working relationship with others and even prompts their level of performance.
Let us now consider these qualities one at a time.
20 of the Best Qualities of a Good Employee
When it comes to qualities or attributes that make up a good employee, there are a hundred and one of them.
As a matter of fact, you can never go wrong or look for “too much” when it comes to finding good employees.
We’ve reviewed as many qualities as possible, though, and have decided to prune it down to the top 20.
We say with confidence that if you can target as much as 50-80% of these qualities in your next recruitment exercise, you are sure of getting good employees.
Honesty and integrity rank among the very first qualities a good employee should possess.
As an employer, you would enjoy working with an employee that is trustworthy and forthright.
Likewise, employees will gain the approval of their employers and colleagues by being honest.
A good employee does not lie, steal or cut corners to suit their own personal advantage at the expense of co-workers or the organization.
Honesty and integrity also involve saying things the way you see them and not trying to mislead the management or co-workers about work progress and output.
A good employee generally shows ethical behaviors, keeping to the company’s core values.
When looking to hire good employees as an employer, one of the qualities to look out for is teamwork.
Regardless of their talents, skills, and work experiences, good employees are not loners when working.
They understand that active collaboration with others is an important ingredient for success and growth.
In a similar vein, these kinds of employees do not also impose their opinions or views on others.
Instead, they listen to suggestions and allow others to make contributions to the team.
A strong team player is a valuable asset any employer would want to have on his team and one of the fine qualities of good employees.
Good Communication Skills; Qualities of a Good Employee
Another quality that makes up good employees is their ability to communicate clearly and understandably.
Communication covers both oral and written communication.
This is important to an organization because there would be many conversations going on internally and with customers.
The communication skills of employees are readily assessed in phone calls, emails, and even day-to-day conversations.
Note, though, that communication isn’t just about speaking or talking.
It also involves actively listening.
This is a desirable skill in employees as it would help them in understanding and comprehension.
Also, it would guide them on how to give a reply.
Employers are interested in getting employees who are exceptional in this area.
Commitment and Dedication
A fully dedicated and committed employee also has the qualities of a good employee inherent.
The commitment and dedication come with a strong passion for their job and the organization they represent.
Dedicated employees are not easily distracted but are always driven to achieve both personal goals and organizational goals.
This dedication is also shown in how they approach their work, doing it with all seriousness and positivity.
They are also the employees who work at being punctual to work every day and arrive with a smile.
Even if they do not have the needed technical skills, they are always willing to give their best and learn, if need be, to get the work done.
This quality is as beautiful as the description sounds and one which every business owner should look for an employee.
Flexibility and Adaptability
Another desirable quality of a good employee is the ability to adapt and being flexible.
Flexibility is needed because there are bound to be necessary changes at some point in your business.
Employees might be required to take up new tasks, change a job process or even move to a new department.
The only way in which your employees can effectively do these is if they are flexible and adaptable.
On the other hand, it would not be easy to acclimatize to changing circumstances if they are rigid.
Good employees are also swift learners in that they are quick to pick up and understand new information.
Why is this important to you as an employer?
Hiring fast learners will help you during your employee onboarding process.
Not only are you going to spend less time training them and bringing them up to speed, but also less money and energy.
Whether you are hiring professionals in their fields or those with little experience, you will still need to continue training them on your own organization’s procedures.
Employees who are fast learners are a valuable asset as they will quickly learn these processes.
Also, if you need to introduce new systems, tools, or job processes, it is advantageous to have fast learners on your team.
This is because they are the ones who will learn the ropes in no time, as you definitely don’t have the luxury of time for a long period of orientation and training.
Willingness to Learn or Coachable
If you think the ability to learn fast is an important quality of good employees, the willingness to learn is even more important.
Employees who are willing to learn or coachable do not assume an elevated position in their minds that they know everything.
They do not believe that they cannot be taught anything new.
Instead, they are humble enough to listen to learn new things.
Even in areas where they might seem to be doing excellently well, they are still open to receiving guidance on this.
In short, they are eager to learn and to be coached by the management or even a fellow employee assigned to mentor them.
They are also great to have around in an organization and make good employees.
Good employees are also very reliable.
This means that you can depend on them at any time and at any point to get the work given to them done and completed.
These kinds of employees work with little or no supervision, as they know what they need to do and do it.
Being reliable also means you can entrust responsibilities to these employees and not have to breathe down their necks to get results.
Additionally, you can send those employees to represent you at events or meetings with customers and be confident they will get the job done.
Being reliable also comes with punctuality to work and other work-related events.
It’s like saying you have employees that you can call upon at any time to solve a problem, and they will come through.
As a business owner, you should also be looking out for self-motivated individuals when searching for good employees.
While it is true that you have a role to play as a leader to show the way and supervise employees, it is best to have those who take the initiative.
It is of great benefit to an organization to have employees who do not need to be told what to do and when to do it at all times.
This is because you can get more productivity out of your employees this way.
Having to motivate your employees to top performance is draining, both for the employer and the employees themselves.
However, having employees who can motivate themselves from within would be great with or without incentives.
Strong Work Ethic
When choosing good employees, you should also be looking out for a strong work ethic as a vital quality.
Employees who have a strong work ethic are not lazy but rather very hardworking.
Their attitude towards work is superb, and they do not joke with their jobs.
These employees are goal setters and goal-getters, and they go about work with a purpose in mind.
Even more, they show this by how early they arrive at work and how dedicated they are to work, avoiding distractions.
No doubt, this is also a very desirous quality to look out for in employees.
Good Interpersonal Relationship Skills
It is no surprise that friction between employees and conflicts ranks as one of the challenges businesses face.
This is because you have individuals of differing backgrounds, attitudes, values, and behaviors.
This tends to lead to misunderstanding and conflict between people of varying backgrounds.
However, you can greatly reduce the chances of this if you hire employees with good interpersonal relationship skills.
These types of employees are great listeners and good communicators.
They are patient and enduring, and they are also very empathetic in that they put other people’s interests first before theirs.
This skill also helps them form good and lasting relationships both with colleagues and your customers.
Confidence; Qualities of a Good Employee
Employees who have high confidence levels are very desirable to the top businesses and organizations.
If you hire good employees with qualities such as confidence, you get people who strongly believe in their abilities.
Not only do they believe in their abilities, but they also believe in the organization they represent.
You can also leverage the confidence of employees to convince prospects and customers to patronize your business.
Confident employees are the best staff to have on your marketing team, as they have a good power of conviction.
Care should be taken to avoid overconfident employees, as there is a thin line between confidence and overconfidence.
The latter is undesirable.
The best employees are not just about working for the money.
Instead, they are goal-oriented, purpose-driven, and focused on a career path.
They have a clear picture of where they want to be in life and have long-term plans beyond their present position.
This is important to employers because it offers insight into the level of commitment and dedication the employee will have.
Employees who have personal goals and plans and work towards them are more likely to work as hard on the company’s goals and objectives.
Good Leadership Skills
It is the abiding interest of the best employers and business owners to groom employees to the position of supervision and management in their firm.
You also want to work on empowering your employees by giving them more responsibilities and positions of oversight.
It is easier to achieve this when you hire employees that have good leadership skills.
Even if they are junior staff, those employees already possess the qualities of a leader and lead by example.
When you cannot attend to some essential tasks due to time constraints and other factors, these are readily available to step in.
The transition and growth of these employees to a higher position in the organization is also easier.
Intelligent people also make outstanding employees.
This intelligence is needed for the employees to be able to carry out their job duties effectively.
Intelligence also comes into play when it comes to having a good knowledge of the industry the business belongs to.
This knowledge would come up as very beneficial when it comes to research and development.
It can also give you the edge over your competitors in your industry as intelligent employees show come up with innovative ideas.
Good Problem Solving Skills; Qualities of a Good Employee
Good employees do not shy away from challenges or problems that come at work.
On the contrary, they embrace these problems and are always the first to recommend solutions for them.
They have been able to exercise and train their problem-solving skills to discover problems and point out solutions.
As an employer, be sure to ask questions relating to job applicants’ past experiences in solving problems during an interview.
This can point you to good employees with outstanding problem-solving skills.
Ambition is also another beautiful quality that the best companies look out for in potential employees.
Being ambitious means that the employees are not satisfied with mediocrity or forever in the same position.
On the contrary, such employees have big dreams, on a personal level and in the organization they work.
They are always looking at forging a great path of success for themselves.
This ambition, when properly channeled, can also help propel your business to greater heights.
Just like confidence, though, there is a point where ambition can go overboard, and this is something you should avoid as a business owner.
Overly ambitious employees would pose more harm than good for your business.
Optimism and Positivity; Essential Qualities of a Good Employee
Optimistic employees generally have a hopeful attitude even in the worst circumstances.
If your employees are optimistic, it builds their resilient spirit to weather the toughest storms.
An optimistic attitude from your employee contributes to a good and healthy work environment.
This is so because your employees are not demotivated by setbacks or challenges but always positive about the situation.
And these are the ones who really overcome challenges and break barriers.
While confidence and self-belief are desirable qualities, they must be balanced out by modesty.
A modest employee is well aware of their limitations and does not overestimate their abilities.
Hence, they do not overstep their boundaries or perform duties that are not assigned to them or in their purview.
Additionally, because modesty and humility work hand in hand, such employees are always willing to accept correction and even criticism.
They are a blessing to any organization they work for.
Good employees do not hoard the skills, knowledge, expertise, or information they possess.
They are very generous enough to share these things with others, their fellow employees.
This is because they know the value of collaboration and know that they also get better when sharing information with others.
As such, good employees are excellent teachers and coaches for their colleagues.
Wrapping Up on Qualities of a Good Employee
You probably know of other qualities you believe a good employee should possess, which wasn’t mentioned in this article.
Qualities like creativity, professionalism, discipline, innovation, e.t.c., might cross your mind.
Well, there are a whole lot of fine qualities which you can desire in an employee.
In fact, some qualities that are seen as desirable for one organization might not be as much for another.
Hence, the onus is on you to know your company’s core values and see which of the qualities discussed above you would most likely need in your employees.
But then, these are some of the most important qualities to look out for in a good employee.
And most of them encompass other qualities not mentioned as they are intertwined.
The importance of hiring good employees for your business cannot be overemphasized, as these can help increase productivity, job performance, a good work culture, employee retention, and even customer retention.
So the next time you are hiring employees, sit with your recruitment team and itemize these essential qualities.
Then, you can structure the right questions around them to reveal who the right applicants really are and guide you in getting good employees.