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Build Your Career Get Ahead

5 Personality Traits That Will Get You Promoted

5 Personality Traits That Will Get You Promoted
Certain personality types are more likely than others to earn a promotion in the workplace. / Credit: Climbing stairs image via Shutterstock

When it comes to making decisions about whom to hire and promote, skills and prior work history are only part of the equation. As many employers know, a candidate's attitude and personality traits play a huge role in how well that person can perform in the workplace.

"An overwhelming amount of data supports the claim that personality predicts job performance better than any other known evaluation method, including interviews and IQ tests," said Robert Hogan, a psychologist and president of personality test provider Hogan Assessments. "Personality should be [a] major factor used to make personnel decisions." 

Carl Persing, research and solutions adviser at strategy consultancy and survey provider Metrus Group, agreed, noting that people's personalities tend to motivate and guide them in their careers. [10 Personality Traits Employers Want]

"Personality traits make you seek out certain jobs and affect how you fit in," Persing told Business News Daily.

When hiring managers are filling entry-level positions, they frequently screen for basic traits like reliability and organization skills, to make sure the candidate will be motivated to do the job. But when it comes time to promote those employees, personality becomes an even more important factor, said Eric Heggestad, an industrial and organizational psychologist and a professor at the University of North Carolina at Charlotte.

For promotions, "you look a lot deeper, at things like charisma and the ability to motivate people," Heggestad said. "It matters more at the higher level, as the span of control increases."

Based on these experts' research, data and experience, here are five personality types that are most likely to earn a promotion:

  • The "people" person. Clients, colleagues and bosses all like this person. He or she has a pleasant personality, gets along with others and is enjoyable to be around. A people person is likely to be a good manager or team leader because of these qualities.
     
  • The delegator. When lower-level employees are given the opportunity to work on a group project, there will always be at least one who assumes the position of leader. This person knows how to give constructive feedback and delegate tasks based on the team members' strengths.
     
  • The adapter. This person learns very quickly and is able to adjust to any task or work environment. His or her intelligence and intuition will help in figuring out how to tackle a new role.
     
  • The decider. A person who is decisive and confident in his or her decisions is a great fit for a leadership position. The ability to choose a direction quickly and effectively is essential for a strategy-based role.
     
  • The ethical person. No matter what the employee's role is, his or her actions are guided by a sense of ethics and integrity. This person won't compromise his or her morals or try to get ahead at the expense of other colleagues.

Hiring managers who choose to conduct formal personality assessments of a candidate or current employee are cautioned to do their research on commercially available tests and only use well-validated measures, Hogan said.

Originally published on Business News Daily.

Nicole Fallon
Nicole Fallon

Nicole Fallon received her Bachelor's degree in Media, Culture and Communication from New York University. She began freelancing for Business News Daily in 2010 and joined the team as a staff writer three years later. She currently serves as the assistant editor. Reach her by email, or follow her on Twitter.