Over 30 years ago, I listened to a panelist tell some college students what he looked for in a candidate. His name was Bill Urseth.
He said he looked for three things:
- Was the candidate smart? He measured smartness by both the answers provided in an interview as well as the questions that were asked. Engaged conversation is a sure sign of intelligence.
- Was the candidate a “couch potato”? Being a couch potato got you eliminated. He favored candidates that did things beyond the routine.
- Had the candidate achieved anything which required “excellence”? Urseth reasoned this was critical, because people who once tasted excellence wouldn’t be satisfied until they tasted again.
I’ve used that mental checklist many times in an interview. I can vouch for its validity.