It costs companies a lot of money to search, hire and train new employees, so you want to make sure you hire the right person the first time. One way to help ensure success when you're scouting for talent is to look for applicants who have leadership qualities—even if you're filling a non-leadership role.
People with leadership qualities are proactive and can integrate into a company more quickly. They can innovate instead of merely administer, and come up with new ideas that will push others in your company to move forward. This person will constantly keep an eye on the horizon and develop new strategies and tactics to achieve goals. He or she will be the first one to know about the latest trends, studies and skill sets.
So how do you know if someone has leadership qualities? You can get an idea by the way that person leads his or her job hunt. According to a survey conducted by JobVite, 61 percent of job seekers say it has been harder finding a job this year. This means those looking for a job understand that they need to be proactive and competitive about their job hunts.
Career expert Melissa Llarena reveals how you can find a potential leader among the masses of job candidates. Llarena says you should look for:
1. Candidates who belong to groups and discussions on LinkedIn. LinkedIn is a massive networking opportunity for professionals, and thought leaders understand the significance of contributing to these discussion boards. You should be on the lookout for those who are involved in conversations related to their areas of expertise.
2. Candidates who are inquiring about opportunities at your company. Job seekers who have the potential to be leaders understand that they need to incorporate the knowledge and opinions of those who have "a finger on the pulse of the industry," she says.
It may be difficult to identify the people who are asking about opportunities at your company, but you can do this by networking appropriately and asking your colleagues what they know.
3. Candidates who follow your company's leaders on social media sites. Most job seekers will study the company's website, but not everyone will follow its social media accounts, including the company’s executives’ accounts. When you find a job seeker doing this, there's a good chance they will also take initiatives into their own hands after you hire them.
4. Candidates who will connect with your current—and former—employees. In order to understand your company better, serious candidates need to speak to the people who know it best—the employees. However, potential leaders understand that although current workers are great sources, former employees can reveal the challenges within the company. If you're still connected with anyone who used to work for the company, continue your relationship with them in case anyone reaches out to them about a position with your company.
Looking for more hiring tips? Check out these hiring articles.