3 Things Make an Employee a Rock Star

So you want to hire a rock star for your new opening? What does “rock star” mean to you? Most focus on competence in a variety of skills, both hard and soft. There are plenty of multi-talented people out there, but few of them are truly rock stars. A true rock star needs to excel at external skills, but also have excellent professional and personal awareness.

Here are three things a person must be aware of (outside of their material competence) to truly be a rock star:

  1. Value – A rock star understands all of the ways they provide value to the organization, and what that value is worth. 
  2. Growth – A rock star knows, or quickly learns, what they don’t know. They identify areas for personal growth and choose what to learn. Anyone insisting that they know it all hasn’t dug in deep enough to realize how much they still have to learn; they’re certainly not a rock star.
  3. Marketability – A rock star knows that they don’t know it all, but that what they do know is good enough for the task at hand. Many candidates possess the first two, but lack the confidence to market themselves as they experts they are.

There are some good candidates with just one of these traits, and some great ones with two. Only a skilled candidate with all three professional awareness traits is a true rock star. They are hard to find and typically very expensive.

Stop focusing so much on specific material competence; skills are easy to learn. Start considering what a candidate knows about themselves to obtain a better picture of how they’ll provide value to you.