A good employee can be trained to be a viable member of your team, but a great employee, according to Ken Sundheim, a staff recruitment and sales writer for Forbes, possesses unteachable qualities like integrity, autonomy, and flexibility. But when you’re faced with the situation of choosing between two candidates, how can you separate the great from the merely suitable one?

Look for a notable history of ambitiousness

An ambitious candidate is almost always the right candidate for the job. How can you tell if a candidate is more ambitious than the others? One of the best methods is to consider if a potential hire has been regularly promoted at his or her previous company or companies. If you notice a history of regular promotions, you may have found yourself a candidate who is not only ambitious but could also be a future leader at your firm.

Find the candidate who pays attention to detail

Attention to detail is immensely important in the financial field. If candidates make small mistakes, you should take them seriously. For example, did one of your top candidates forget to attach his resume to an email? Or, did one of your potential hires fail to remember a hiring committee member’s name? Oversights like these can provide information about whether someone is detailed-oriented or not.

Search for a candidate who is curious

A great hire is curious about the latest information and best practices and is excited to embrace new challenges. One of the best ways to gauge if a candidate expresses these qualities is by listening to the ingenuity in his or her questions about your company. If the questions are boilerplate, you might not have the candidate who is the most excited to learn, grow, and make new contributions to your firm.

Choose the candidate with a high emotional intelligence (EQ)

The best candidates will have a high emotional intelligence (EQ) that they can use to communicate with others, interpret behavior, and make decisions. How can you determine if your candidate has a high EQ? Pay attention to the way your candidate answers questions. If it seems like she is simply telling you what you want to hear or is not authentically answering a question, he or she likely does not have enough emotional intelligence to impress the most important person of all: you.

Go with your gut

Your gut is a powerful resource for decision-making, but in our highly intellectual sphere, we often ignore this valuable information. Psychologists suggest that what we dub “our gut” has been collecting useful subconscious information for our entire lives. If your gut is telling you to choose one candidate over another, then listen to it.

It can be difficult to pinpoint the razor-thin difference between two qualified candidates. But an outside perspective can help you choose the better option. Career Moves has placed over 450 accounting and finance professionals into over 80 different Connecticut companies over the last 17 years. We use our experience and deep network of professionals to find the top candidates in the marketplace. Contact us today to discuss how we can assist with your hiring needs.

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