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Top 10 Qualities to Show in Job Interviews

Ms. Inglish is a successful employment & training pro, setting Midwest regional records with tens of thousands placed in gainful employment.

Succeed in a job interview by keeping these qualities in mind.

Succeed in a job interview by keeping these qualities in mind.

What to Show Us, the Interviewers

1. Appropriate Professional Appearance

Job candidates arrive at their interviews, but they are frequently observed from the time they enter the building and sometimes even in the parking lot before and after the interview occurs. The process can feel, well—creepy! No place is safe from observation except the washroom (usually) these days.

If the job candidate is at all sensitive to the expectations of corporate life, he or she will have dressed appropriately for the job in question and practiced good interview behaviors in front of a mirror. A candidate may also ask friends to check him/her out before the interview.

If an applicant arrives in golf pants or dance club clothing, then that appearance reflects a lack of corporate role awareness, so the wanted place in the organization is likely to evade the interviewee. The appropriate appearance reflects the appropriate beliefs and attitudes for a good interview and acceptable work habits and productivity in the company.

Atop all this is the dynamic that company representatives like to hire people who look and behave like the rest of the employees, but they also want new people to stand out in productivity and innovative thinking. Interview candidates often need to be the best of both sides—familiar and accepted vs. new and forward-thinking.

Clothing and Grooming Are Important. How do the rest of the workers at the company dress? You might want to drive by and take a look before your interview.

Clothing and Grooming Are Important. How do the rest of the workers at the company dress? You might want to drive by and take a look before your interview.

2. High Energy and Interest in Working

Employers do not want to see a spinning-car-wheels type of hyperactivity on the job, but they do want to see their employees behaving in a manner that projects enthusiasm and a drive to produce and succeed.

Bosses and supervisors want employees that will be working with good energy all the time. At the start of a job interview, they can observe such a quality of energy as the employee enters the room.

High energy shows in your posture, your walk, and your eyes. If you have it, your job interviews will be more successful. If you have high energy at work, employers will think you are more likely to do a good job if they promote you or give you a raise, than workers who are less productive.

3. Good Work Ethic

What is "good"?

To a slacker, all work is too hard. Employers want workers that want to work.

A person that has a good work ethic has usually learned it from somewhere—such as from family and teachers. Employers look for this desire and willingness to work in every potential employee:

  • Role models and mentors that believe in the importance of hard work
  • Work-related free-time activities
  • Willingness to take a second or even a third job
  • No concern with the number of hours worked—no clock watching
  • High career goals
  • Good follow through—completes anything undertaken
  • Paid own way through college

4. Motivation Derived From Good Role Models

Anyone from any background can become a success.

Success usually takes with hard work and because the individual had good role models among adults in life as they grew up. These could be parents, aunts and uncles, neighbors, teachers, pastors or rabbis, scout leaders, summer youth leaders, and a host of other people that influence children. It is important to have had role models growing up and it is important to find mentors on the job to serve as current role models.

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Read More From Toughnickel

Having had early role models or later choosing effective role models helps a job candidate to project that fact that 1) not only are they motivated, but also that 2) they can motivate others effectively.

Aspects of maturity.

Aspects of maturity.

5. Emotional Maturity

An immature person often uses two targeted qualities in order to manipulate and mislead others:

  1. A sometimes-childlike charm and skill in flattery, and
  2. A talent for distracting attention from his/her own shortcomings by creating a disturbance or bullying others.

Immature people are not good employees. The goal of the immature is often to satisfy only his/her own short-term gratification needs.

In fact, they often feel that the employer is responsible for doing so. Further, they may have this quality in such an extreme as to suffer from Narcissistic Personality Disorder. Others who are rather immature emotionally are less troublesome on the job and may have what is called a low EQ (Emotional Quotient); however, the EQ can be raised through instruction and training.

The strongest marker of maturity is the concern for the well-being of other human beings on a daily basis.

Emotional maturity is shown by:

  • Good Judgment: Effective decision making.
  • Handling Oneself well in business affairs: For example, no get-rich-quick schemes.
  • Financial Responsibility: Does not overspend and create debt problems.
  • A relatively low number of past employers.
  • Has the person pursued a career in a mature and adult manner? Has this individual job-hopped without realistic consideration for the future of either employers or self?
Attitude can become more proactive and positive.

Attitude can become more proactive and positive.

6. Positive Attitude: Performing Well Is More Important Than the Paycheck

Some people work only for the money and they usually don't do a very good job at the work, because they don't like it.

Such individuals have little inner motivation to do well at a job. They often develop a resentment of work, the boss, and the company. Consequently, they will hold back their best from the job, do little real work, and coast to retirement if they can.

7. Loyalty

Loyalty is supporting your company, boss, and coworkers verbally and with actions. It means that you share a common mission statement and work together with your company and coworkers in good faith toward common goals. This also means a longer-term commitment than just a few days' work. Job-hoppers do not show loyalty.

8. Cooperation

Compatible and similar individuals make the best work teams for maximized production and success. A job applicant that is self-absorbed, emotionally "touchy", or seems to have a chip n their shoulder during an interview is likely to be disruptive and demoralizing on the job. A cooperative, open-minded person that works hard is an ideal employee.

The Thunderbirds Cannot Fly Without Cooperation

The Thunderbirds Cannot Fly Without Cooperation

9. Follow-Through

Follow-through is useful in both personal and professional life. Good follow-through is shown in a goal-oriented individual with a history of completing his/her projects on time, often with additional work over that which is necessary for just minimal completion of a project.

Follow-through is not a person that picks up his first paycheck and never returns to the job.

10. Ability To Channel Anger Productively

The best job-seekers can manage hostilities smoothly and can supply examples of how they have done this. They also do not criticize or denigrate past employers during job interviews.

Success Ahead

Success Ahead

Further Reading: The Ideal Employee

This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.

© 2007 Patty Inglish MS

Experiences & Additions

Daniel on January 15, 2016:

Thanks for the wonderful information boss.

Patty Inglish MS (author) from USA and Asgardia, the First Space Nation on June 11, 2013:

It helps to not have to go into an interview totally blind to what will occur!

truthbay on June 11, 2013:

well these ideas serves great help to us job hunters .. boosts confidence .. thinking about these qualities, we can train ourselves learning these stuffs ..

Patty Inglish MS (author) from USA and Asgardia, the First Space Nation on November 23, 2012:

Thank you for your comments, writerscentro!

Aditya Soni from India on November 23, 2012:

I like the last quality. Sometimes the interviewer will test if you're able to control your anger by doing something...that should annoy you.....But you don't need to be angry.......These are the ways of testing the interviewee qualities. A useful hub dear.............God bless and voted upp !!!!!

Patty Inglish MS (author) from USA and Asgardia, the First Space Nation on November 18, 2012:

I agree that interviews can be completely nerve-shattering. This is especially true as the nature of interview questions changes over the years, about once a decade or more often in the 2010s - 2020s. Some job seekers are offended by some of the questions and feel that the interviewer is trying to make a fool of them. It's not a happy thing.

Cynthia Calhoun from Western NC on November 18, 2012:

Fabulous advice and useful to so, so many people. Interviews can be so nerve-wracking, but with these tips, you can really help to calm a lot of nerves.

Vidhya L from Chennai, India on October 29, 2012:

Useful hub. I think emotional maturity is a very important quality. Thanks for the share.

Patty Inglish MS (author) from USA and Asgardia, the First Space Nation on March 13, 2012:

Thanks for your views - it seems people are more and more angry in the 2010s - or is it just my area in the Midwest?

louromano on March 13, 2012:

Nice Hub.I Agree on the last one. Anger management is a hot topic today, and rightly so, if you watch the news. GOod list here!

abbysonmartin from England on January 12, 2012:

hi guys very nice hubpages post and many information about of hot qualties interviews jobs very nice define thanxxxx..?

Patty Inglish MS (author) from USA and Asgardia, the First Space Nation on January 05, 2012:

Thank for that observation, ndowing; it's a really useful one.

bdowning from Ventura, California on January 05, 2012:

One of the hardest things to discover about people is how they will respond to taking ownership of tasks they inherently dislike doing. Are thy able to see past their immediate situation and grow emotionally and skill wise to become more valuable for an organization or will they just do the minimum and never grow? My experience is most people will say they are willing but few are actually able to grow into a valuable asset. Finding those diamonds in the rough before they become diamonds would be a priceless skill for any interviewer.

Xinox Leugim from Philippines on August 30, 2011:

Enough confidence during an interview is also very critical to grab the job you are vying for. Sometimes, you think you are qualified enough but you must project in a way during the interview that the interviewer will not doubt on your ability. I remember during my interview before in an audit firm, I thought my humility would bring me to the job. I was a bit timid which I thought companies would go for not so aggressive applicants only to know that you must be able to

exude sufficient enthusiasm to get hired. However, once employed, work attitudes really is so important to get along well with your co-workers. While you could be the smartest in the group, if you have an unacceptable work ethics, it will be disadvantageous in the advancement of your career. So, i think the best way up is really a balance of intelligence and emotional quotient.

Support Med. from Michigan on August 24, 2011:

Glad I came across this hub! You made a suggestion to another poster about "offer to work a very short free internship so they can evaluate you -" Good suggestion and one I will keep in mind. v/r

yaseen on July 22, 2011:

Thanks patty for the awesome advice.This really helped me.

Praveen Kumar on June 03, 2011:

Wow, so good, interesting & very informatics article thanks for sharing.

stars439 from Louisiana, The Magnolia and Pelican State. on May 18, 2011:

A very nice hub, and informative one. GBY.

Business Model on April 11, 2011:

Great post! Keep up the good work.

Bronson_Hub from San Francisco, CA on February 11, 2011:

Thanks for the reminders that I need to step it up at work! You probably just got me a raise in the future, indirectly. How much do I owe you :P

Xie Toshiba on January 25, 2011:

Project for school in China Thanks for info.

Donna Oliver from Midwest, U.S.A. on November 12, 2010:

Thank you for the great information!

TroyM on November 12, 2010:

Agree on the last one. Anger management is a hot topic today, and rightly so, if you watch the news. GOod list here!

MKayo from Texas on September 14, 2010:

Good, basic, and common sense advice. I wish more younger folks would take this advice to heart. Thanks for the great info.

richtwf on September 01, 2010:

I've gained one or two more different insights and will use them in the future. Lots of great advice and thanks for sharing.

Patty Inglish MS (author) from USA and Asgardia, the First Space Nation on August 05, 2010:

Best of success to you, angela_michelle! If you can write about it, you can do it, so tell us about the interview when you're done.

Angela Michelle Schultz from United States on August 04, 2010:

Okay, so I just wrote my own hub on this very same topic. Your article puts mine to shame. I am making a link, rating this up useful and awesome. :) I have an interview next Tuesday wish me luck!

Holly from Lone Star State on July 26, 2010:

Great Hub and Great Tips. I can look back and see myself during interviews and know where I did well and where I needed improvement. With age-I have improved, because my work ethic and drive are now more goal oriented, which I suppose is why I now have better opportunities than I did a few years ago.

Thanks for sharing...

Patty Inglish MS (author) from USA and Asgardia, the First Space Nation on July 14, 2010:

Cool, tom; I will read it when it is posted! Thanks to you and everyone for comments.

Great day to everyone!

tom hellert from home on July 13, 2010:


I hope deo spell checked that paper- as for your list you forgot-Mr. Myagi say "Always look a eye jobseeker san"- "Always look a eye"

Sit up during the interview andlean forward and show some interest in your field act like what you do is so cool or important beacause you like it, it interests you. i am going to stop commenting as I amgoing to write my own hub and reference this one as my inspiration and the link to this one i may just link to it here as my inspiration

Ambition398 on July 09, 2010:

The maturity part is very important, regardless of age. TOo many people try to remain set in ways that are not always good. Be willing and open to change - -for the good :)

Nice hub!

Patty Inglish MS (author) from USA and Asgardia, the First Space Nation on June 13, 2010:

I cannot detect the problem, Prasanna. If you are applying for jobs for which you qualify, it may be only a matter of "not enough experience." This is very difficult. If this is the problem, offer to work a very short free internship so they can evaluate you - 1 or 2 days only. See if that works. It sometimes does work.



Prasanna on June 13, 2010:

Hi Ms.Patty I have attended 5 interviews in the past five days but I din't get selected. I know im good in English, im answering all the questions what they ask but they say it is not enough.Please help me out in this.I have interview tomorrow also, i need some help from you.

kims3003 on January 06, 2010:

very well thought out and well written article. A+!

Patty Inglish MS (author) from USA and Asgardia, the First Space Nation on October 01, 2009:

That's quite kind of you to share with me and I hope that information really works well. I'll keep your husband in my good thougths today for that job interview. Energy is a good thing.

Deborah-Lynn from Los Angeles, California on October 01, 2009:

Hi Patty, when I read your Hub, I actually unplugged my laptop and brought into the study for my husband to read, he has an interview at 3pm tommorrow and your Hub outlined some very specific points I thought he should be aware of. I know your Hub will make a difference for him, he will be more prepared, the energy level he emits is usually pretty low, so that's great he will accept the imput from your Hub more willingly than if it came from me. I am delighted!

Patty Inglish MS (author) from USA and Asgardia, the First Space Nation on August 24, 2009:

If you have Internet access at home and also a landline telephone, you can work for LiveOps.

f.rifka on August 23, 2009:

Please can you help me to get a trusted free online job I am a housewife, and need a job.I tried a lot but they are a lot of money.thank you.

askjanbrass from St. Louis, MO on August 22, 2009:

Helpful ideas.


ola on May 07, 2009:

this is a gooden!

Juan R Natal Henriquez on April 27, 2009:

Exposition of subject matter is excellent and represent a valuable resource for briefs and initial step for further enhancements on the matter.

Patty Inglish MS (author) from USA and Asgardia, the First Space Nation on January 29, 2009:

Glad it could be of use to you!

Chetna Sidhu on January 27, 2009:

Your post genuinely assisted me understand this topic.

Patty Inglish MS (author) from USA and Asgardia, the First Space Nation on November 12, 2008:

Actually, that is nonsense, because it is illogical. A good decision can be made more than once. To make a different decision each time, even in the same scenario, is either 1) immaturity, or 2) a game played to keep subordinates and superiors off guard, which the hallmark of an abuser or a person with any of several mental health disorders. Neither 1) nor 2) is good.