This is sort of an extension of an earlier post on “What is the One Defining Quality of Desirable Employees?” where I claimed that optimism trumped all.
I recently watched a YouTube clip (sorry, didn’t save the link) where the CEO of Zappo’s talked about some of the unique things they asked during interviews and one thing that clicked for me – you could probably have a really good idea of how good an employee will be by watching how much they smile during the interview.
That sounds fairly simplistic but I think there may be something to it. Part of it comes from Malcolm Gladwell’s hypothesis that you can make correct judgments about people and things within seconds. Part of it is because we’re in a customer-service focused business and if someone doesn’t smile much at an interview (when they’ll likely be nervous already), I doubt they’ll smile much at the circulation desk. And part of it is that I think you can draw a strong correlation between people who are happy (as evidenced by a lot of smiling) and people who have desirable qualities such as optimism, enthusiasm and openness to change.