8 Traits of a Great Employee

by Greg Skloot
Management   |   4 Min Read
great employee

1. You are coachable

A great team member can be coached and guided towards improving. This makes you versatile — even if you don’t have the exact skill set needed for success on day one, you can quickly learn and build the necessary skills.

2. You are humble

Even if you do indeed have the skills needed on day one; if you are arrogant, nobody will want to work with you. Great team members are humble and recognize that they always have more to learn.

3. You grow your talents

The best teams are diverse with people that have different strengths and weaknesses. Identify your strongest talents and work diligently to improve them. These can be both soft and hard skills; for example, if you become known as someone who is great at organization, leaders will seek you out when a project needs to be organized. The same goes for building up expertise in digital marketing or customer support.

4. You are in it for the team, not just yourself

As an individual contributor, by definition you are making contributions to the team individually. Well-run teams establish a culture that values the success of the team over that of the individual. Each person’s deliverables are only as good as the team’s overall progress. That means you should be motivated to help your colleagues achieve their individual goals as well.

5. You ask for help

Great team members ask for help when they get stuck. This is a common mark of an “A player”. Instead of wasting time trying to do something inefficiently, you consult others and admit when you need guidance. You are honest in your weekly status updates about concerns, so the team can help you address them.

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6. You go above and beyond

When your team is made up of great people, you’ll notice that they always strive to do more. A project is never done; it can always be improved. You don’t stick to just your defined role; instead, you always ask what else can be done.

7. You are trusted to always deliver

Another easy way to identify an A player on the team is to ask “if you are given an assignment, can you be trusted to get it done right and on time?” For great team members, the answer is always yes.

8. You are someone others want to have dinner with

Even if you are highly skilled, coachable and humble, you won’t make a truly great team member unless you are also likable by your teammates. A good rule of thumb is “never be the brilliant jerk.” Talent and skills must be complimented by humility, eagerness to learn and respect for everyone else on the team.

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