What should hiring managers look for when they interview female candidates and how can they best support these superstars as they come on board? - Image by Sue Styles from Pixabay 

What should hiring managers look for when they interview female candidates and how can they best support these superstars as they come on board?

Image by Sue Styles from Pixabay 

We’re living at a time when women excel across the board––from the women’s soccer team winning the World Cup to the top five winners of the STEM Competition being girls for the first time ever to a teen girl championing the climate crisis as Time’s “Person of the Year.”

I think the key is finding great people, no matter where they are, and aggressively showing them what tools you are going to give them to help them succeed.

 I think we can officially call 2020 the year of females rising.

With this in mind, I’ve spoken with several female executives to find out what hiring managers should be look for when they interview female candidates and how they can best support these superstars as they come on board.

Fire in the Belly

All of the women I interviewed talked about a certain X factor, or fire in the belly, that is a calling card for future leaders. Whether it’s due to charisma, confidence or raw determination, this fire in the belly mindset is the Holy Grail of future leaders.

 These are your hustlers ,and you can usually tell who they are by the questions they ask during the interview. They don’t just want to know what the job entails and the benefits provided. These ladies have a goal in mind and it comes down to one word – growth. They will be the candidates asking questions like, “What are additional opportunities,” and “How do you see me growing with this company?”

As Denise Casagrande, president of PCG Digital said, “When you are interviewing and you ask someone what they’re looking for in a company and they don’t say growth, that’s a big red flag. I get some stellar resumes, but if they come in and don’t interview well and don’t talk about growing with the company, they’re not for us.”

Cast the Talent Net Wide

One of the leading women I spoke with, Jacci Grillo, Director of NE Sales for Cox Automotive, did not have an automotive background before Cox recruited her. She was actively recruited because she was rock solid in her current position and her hiring manager knew that while he could teach her the automotive part. The  will to succeed is an inborn trait. The hiring manager was right.

When Grillo began her new role, the first thing she did was take her laptop and work at a dealership in order to learn the ins and outs of the business. She then took that knowledge to help earn her client’s trust, climbed the ladder quickly and became a director of sales for Cox Automotive in fewer than ten years.

“I think the key is finding great people, no matter where they are, and aggressively showing them what tools you are going to give them to help them succeed,” said Grillo.

There is No Summit

One of the leaders I interviewed, Katie Steele, Founder of THRIVE Bend, explains that even as she opened and grew her family therapy business, she dreamed of more.

“There is no summit,” Steele explained. “I am a dreamer and I will never be fully satisfied. I think when it comes to self-worth and dreaming, there will always be more.”

Hiring managers, if you have a female that comes in hungry for more in this way, stop the interview and offer that future leader a job immediately.

Positivity

It comes through loud and clear in their interviews–– every single one of the leading females I’ve spoken to believe in the power of positive thinking.

They all believe that the energy put out by individuals is the energy they receive back. These women put out some serious buzz, you guys!

 Cox Automotive’s Grillo says it best when she advises, “Don’t say, ‘I’m going to go into this deal one more time so they can tell me no.’ Go in saying, ‘I’m going to go in one more time so they can tell me yes.” That is the power of a positive mindset!

From a positive attitude to determination to a team-friendly attitude, women bring so many gifts to the companies they serve. Look for the above traits in your next interview and when you find the next female candidate who ticks all four boxes, offer that future leader a job on the spot!

Laurie Halter is the owner of Charisma! Communications and host of the Carearing podcast. You can find her at Laurie@charismacommunications.com.

Originally posted on P&A Magazine

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