Are you a High Performance Candidate?

When we are selecting it’s our job to find the high performance candidates. Statistically speaking, in a group of 10 people 2 of them will be high performers.

Of course every client assignment is different. What constitutes a high performing Underwriting Manager will differ from one company to another.

A crucial factor we consider when assessing a candidate’s capabilities is their academic and professional qualifications.

In Actuarial roles, professional qualifications (i.e. FSA or FIAA) are mandatory; being certified by the Actuarial associations means that the candidate has all of the necessary knowledge and capabilities to take on the day-to-day actuarial tasks and projects.

In other areas, such as project management, professional qualifications (e.g. PMP) are not always a must-have. However they can give you the advantage as they demonstrate commitment to further developing your career within project management.

We also look into the candidates achievements throughout their career (here’s a tip for you, we especially look at their achievements at their current employer).

When describing your achievements, it’s important to emphasize the objectives, explain the task that was set, the action you took, and the results and benefits. Achievements are a crucial factor on determining whether the candidate is a high performer, because they demonstrate the candidate’s competence levels in many different ways.

If a candidate always stays late but consistently misses their deadline, they will not be considered a high performance candidate. A high performance candidate is able to complete their tasks and projects QOTIF (Quality On Time In Full).

The ability to communicate and build relationships is a key characteristic of a high performance candidate.

For leadership roles if the candidate has lack of leadership attributes, is a micro-manager, or has a rigid management approach, he or she will not be considered a high performer. Great leaders not only look after the overall performance of the team, but have an ability to grow the team, improve sales, retain clients, retain and develop talent within the team, foster an effective client-driven culture, and maintain effective and active communication.

Every company has a different set of corporate values, culture, and business direction.

If there are 2 candidates with the same amount of experience and skill set, then how do we decide which candidate to hire? We assess high performing candidates by their attitude. This assists us in filtering the pool of talent into the ones who can do it and those who will excel.

High performance candidates have strong integrity and ethics.

Recently, in Canada, a sports fan made a derogatory remark on live television, and was consequently dismissed by his employer. This action does not correlate to his work performance, but is equally damaging as it tarnishes the company’s image.

A high performance candidate is responsible for their own actions and behaviours inside and outside of work, as everything they do reflects their personal and professional image.

A high performance candidate is a professional who has extensive relevant experience and technical skills, combined with an effective and efficient working style and the right attitudes. They are able to demonstrate a solid track record of achievements.

Now think about your CV and application process – how can you demonstrate these attributes? The more time you spend working this out the better chances you have of landing your dream role.

Good Luck!
Tommy Lau

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