Facebook’s VP Of HR Reveals Her Most Important Trait For A Job Candidate, Questions She Asks

by 12 months ago

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There is no shortage of career advice on the internet. Heck, we have shared boatloads of it right here on this very website. However, there’s a good reason for that. When it comes to landing the job you desire you want to be armed with as much knowledge and confidence as possible. Just like the Cub Scouts, you need to always be prepared.

In the past we have shared career and job interview advice from companies such as SpaceX, Amazon, Glassdoor, and many more.

Today we look to Facebook’s Vice President of Human Resources Janelle Gale for some advice as to what she looks for in a potential employee.

Surprisingly, Gale says that despite what many job candidates think, she does NOT want to hire “the smartest person in the room.” Here’s what she really wants to see in a potential employee.

“We look for learners, people who are acquainted to learning fast, are intellectually curious, and constantly looking to expand their knowledge,” she told Business Insider. “They’re actively seeking feedback and they’re open to it.”

In other words, don’t be a know-it-all and be open to admitting that you are ready to learn. If you come in thinking you already have the answers you can pretty much guarantee you won’t be hired.

“If you’ve got literally the smartest person in the room, who is the top expert in whatever they’re doing, and they’re not opening to learning, that is a huge red flag for us,” she said. “We need people who are looking to incorporate new behaviors, new information, and new data, into their repertoire and skills.”

Gale said that people who already think they know it all also typically overestimate themselves.

“There’s just so much to learn here, no matter if you’re an entry level college graduate or if you’re top in your field,” she said. “Cockiness does not work.”

As for the questions she uses to weed out those who will have difficultly with learning and developing on the job, Gale asks candidates about previous projects they have worked on and, “What would you have done differently?” or “What did you learn in the process?”

“If someone hesitates for a really long time and can’t come up with an answer, or if they spin it so that what they learned actually makes them look good, that tells me that they are closed off to learning,” revealed Gale.

“I want someone to answer that question saying, ‘Oh, there’s a ton I learned from that’ or ‘Let me give you the top one, but there’s so much more,'” Gale explained. “The ability to incorporate new knowledge and information into what you’re doing allows us to move faster, because you’re learning faster.”

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