6 Common Traits of Top Candidates

6 Common Traits of Top Candidates

Over my 9 years of doing professional recruitment, I feel it has become easier and easier to see what differentiates top candidates in the market from those who are “middle of the road.”
Here are 6 common traits of the way the “stars” go about navigating their careers; these are the “A+” candidates that I love presenting to my clients.

  1. They are too busy to search for a job. Why? Because they are too busy being productive at work and being top performers. They don’t spend a lot of time scouring job boards and applying to jobs during work hours.
  2. Opportunities come to them. That Big 4 auditor who was loved by his clients will be approached when a Senior Financial Analyst role comes available. That Manager of Tax who impressed his CFO will be remembered when the CFO starts his next venture in a year. That Partner who was really impressed by his Audit Manager will keep her eyes open for opportunities within her network if she knows that the Manager will leave public practice eventually.
  3. They are selective with the recruiters they work with. The best candidates only work with one or two different recruitment firms that are niched in the market. Why? Because they don’t have to work with more than that.
  4. They are sometimes hard to find. Some of the best candidates often have bare bones LinkedIn profiles or aren’t that active on Social Media and they definitely aren’t applying to a ton of jobs. Therefore, the best candidates usually require some research to find.
  5. They are rarely “actively” looking for a job. When I speak with the best candidates in the market, they will say that they are open to hearing about an amazing opportunity if it comes up, but rarely will they ever say that they have gone on a dozen interviews and applied to dozens of postings.
  6. They give back to their communities. Often these candidates are involved in extra-curricular activities and are active in their communities, which can lead to referrals and introductions from those they volunteer with.

What other traits of top candidates have you seen? Have I missed any?


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