Identifying a Candidate’s Teamwork Skills

Employer Insights

Identifying a Candidate’s Teamwork Skills

Teamwork skills are one of the ideal traits a candidate should possess. They are also some of the most challenging to recognize. Identifying a candidate who can work effectively as part of a team can be critical to your company’s success.

What Makes a Great Team Player?

Being a team player means more than just someone who participates in conversations and activities while they’re at work. Great team players are:

  • Flexible and highly adaptable in both their business and personal lives
  • Emotionally stable
  • Focused on working with everyone involved on a project, not just a select few
  • Team-focused: They understand that great ideas can originate for any member of the team
  • Open and communicative: they’re willing to discuss their thoughts and concerns openly, without feeling threatened
  • Always looking for potential solutions when problems arise

Questions to Identify Teamwork Skills

Now that you know what makes a great team player, let’s take look at how to identify a candidate’s teamwork skill with four simple questions:

1. When do you feel you’re in your element: Working alone and uninterrupted, or working as part of a team?

Everyone enjoys a little solitude now and then, but if your candidate says their ideal working environment is one of isolation, rather than one of togetherness, they’re likely not the great team player you’re looking for.

2. What is your ideal level of daily group interaction?

You’re asking them to describe their preferred level of communication and cooperation with team members. An applicant who is quick to collaborate with other members of the group is demonstrating an essential teamwork skill.

3. Describe a successful project you worked on. What was your role in the project? Why do you feel the project was successful?

Did your candidate quickly tell you all about their personal success and why their role was so important? If so, they are better suited to a position that requires less team focus.

Or, did your candidate go into details about the entire project, highlighting team achievements, and collaborative successes? If so, you’ve just identified a great team player!

4. Tell me about a time you had to deal with conflict, either with a colleague or a client.  How did you resolve the issue?

We all experience conflict at one time or another; it’s only natural. Conflict is unavoidable, but how someone deals with conflict can reveal a lot about that person.

If your candidate describes a situation that happened some time ago, but with very real current emotion, it’s a big red flag. An emotional response to a work-related conflict is a clear signal that this is a candidate with a limited capability to thrive in a group atmosphere. On the other hand, if your candidate describes a situation evenly, without sentiment, they’re showing you they can step aside from their personal emotions for the benefit of the team, and focus on moving forward. And that is exactly what a great team player will do.

Ready to Find That Great Teammate?

Identifying a candidate’s teamwork skill can be tricky! If you need to be confident that your next candidate is an excellent team player, let the specialists at INSPYR Solutions help you evaluate their teamwork quotient.

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