Hiring the Ritz-Carlton Way: For Heart

Written by, Allie Blair

I had the honor of spending the past three days at The Ritz Carlton with some amazing co-workers. During our stay, my co-workers and I had the chance to meet with the General Manager, Greg. We asked Greg what the most important quality is that he looks for in every potential employee. Although his response was simple, it was impactful: “I hire for heart.”  He explained how anyone can go to work because they need a paycheck. The employees that you need are the ones who are there for much more than that. Too often, it might seem like a great hire because of a resume. It’s also important to keep these qualities in mind when interviewing:

Attitude first, skill second: A recent three-year study by LeadershipIQ found that 46% of new employees will fail within their first year. These new employees did not lack the skills necessary to do their job, but instead lacked coachability, emotional intelligence, motivation, and temperament. The same study showed that hiring managers who focused on how the candidates attitude presented itself in those same categories had strong success in their new employees.

Willingness and Aptitude to Learn: Maybe the candidate you interviewed does not have every skill listed on the job description, but they have the passion and the drive for continuing learning. Finding employees who are interested in investing themselves will help them grow personally and professionally within the organization. With industries constantly changing, employees need to continue to gain knowledge to keep up with the competition.

Passion: Greg explained to us that anyone can have a job. Those looking for a true career at The Ritz, began working in hospitality because of many reasons: maybe they enjoyed cooking for their friends, or taking care of their grandmother, or loved cleaning because it reminded them of a Saturday at home with their Mother. He showed us how a great employee will have a “Servant Heart”. Spend time getting to know your candidate and where exactly their passion lies.

When interviewing candidates for your company, keep the soft skills in mind and remember to Hire for Heart. In doing so, you will be sure to find someone that is going to be a great asset to your team!

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