The top five employee skills you need to look for
In the digital age, people often equate the introduction of new digital tools with innovation. But it’s not just buying new software that makes a company innovative. It is the creative use of digital tools to achieve something new.
As new technologies, challenges, and opportunities arise, you need people who can think differently. You need new ideas for old problems. Creativity is a valued skill in any business – from developing business strategies to unlocking new efficiency gains.
How to identify creativity
In the face of the question, creative people are looking for many possible answers, not just one. You’ll see unique opportunities where others will grab a functional attachment.
One way to measure creativity is to see how the candidate thinks. How many answers can you get to these questions: How would the world be different if people had two thumbs in each hand? What is something (or an idea for something) you’ve come up with?
Solving the problem
The development of new digital features is accelerating the pace of change in all markets. Change creates new opportunities, but also new challenges.
The ability to solve problems efficiently and quickly is invaluable to businesses. For all the obstacles that arise – be it customer service, internal operations, or overall business strategy – you need people with solid problem-solving skills to remove a potential obstacle.
Assessment of problem solving skills
There are two ways to measure a candidate’s problems in solving problems. First, ask them to describe the time they solved the problem in the previous work. Ask them to discuss the outcome and how successful the solution was.
Another option is to give your candidate a realistic problem scenario in your company and ask them how they would solve it. Ask them for another solution. Then ask them to explain how one of these options can help solve the problem. Good problem solvers are smart enough to come up with different solutions and have the foresight to predict how the results will vary.
Adaptability / dexterity
Technological developments are forcing companies to develop almost all parts of their business strategy. Companies need individual employees who are agile and flexible to foster a culture of change.
Agile people are able to keep a broad overview of the situation. They monitor the development of a particular strategy and the forces that influence it. You have the flexibility to accept change and the confidence to act when needed.
How to identify adaptability and agility
Give your candidate a relevant Business Challenge and ask him or her to describe the strategy he or she intends to develop. Are you stuck in the smallest details or focus on the whole?
Once they are done, you present an obstacle – new regulation, a new competitor, a senior executive leaving – and ask them how they want to change strategy to achieve the same goal. Do this a few times and notice how they respond to each new challenge. Agile graduates face new challenges step by step, while those without this ability do not.
People who are natural leaders are valuable at all levels of the organization, from entry level to middle management to senior management. You are proactive, self-directed and focused on growth. You let your colleagues work at the highest level, even in situations of uncertainty.
When companies make technology-driven changes, whether it’s a complete digital transformation, the introduction of new business software, or the addition of new digital opportunities, you need people committed to it.
How to identify leadership
Ask your candidate about his goals. Ask them to talk about their dreams. Do you have a plan to get there? Do they have the strength to succeed in such a role? If not, what do you do to get it? People with strong leadership have the answers to all of these questions.