Senior-Level Business Leaders Say Positive Attitude is the Key to Getting the Job

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While a résumé may get you in the door, a good attitude will get the offer. A new ExecuNet survey reveals that when given a choice between an "A-Player" with a bad attitude and a "B-Player" with a good attitude, corporate managers overwhelming choose disposition before qualifications.

B players with great attitudes can likely become A players in the right environment.

Corporate business leaders are emphasizing the importance of cultural fit and think a positive attitude can have a great effect on team morale, particularly as economic factors cause companies to struggle with employee engagement and motivation—that’s the takeaway from a new survey from ExecuNet, the private business and career network.

Nearly 88 percent of the 3,785 senior-level executives surveyed by ExecuNet said they would rather enhance their team with that individual who possesses a good attitude, even if he or she does not perform to the highest level or have top qualifications. Only 6 percent of the surveyed executives said they would accept an A-player’s bad attitude, and another 6 percent were unsure.

“In reviewing initial data from our 21st annual executive job market intelligence survey, we're finding there is a dramatic attitudinal contrast between those who are happy at work and those who are not. Negativity can quickly become contagious in an organization and drag down performance. B-players with great attitudes can likely become A-players in the right environment,” says Robyn Greenspan, ExecuNet’s Chief Content Officer.

For job seekers who are concerned their skills are not as strong as their competitors, ExecuNet recommends an attention-getting résumé that can generate a face-to-face interview. At that time, a candidate can demonstrate a positive, professional attitude that aligns with the organizational culture and would be a good fit for the team.

A-players with bad attitudes are advised to adjust their behavior and make better efforts to fit in, as ExecuNet’s research indicates advancement based on the quality of their work alone will be unattainable.

These recent findings come from ExecuNet’s 21st annual executive job market intelligence surveys. “For the past two decades, we’ve learned what’s really on the minds of executive candidates, hiring companies and recruiters, from ExecuNet’s annual job market intelligence surveys,” says Mark Anderson, ExecuNet President and Chief Economist. “Understanding the trends from those three perspectives will enable us, in our 21st year of research, to report on the 2013 executive job marketplace outlook and enable decision-makers to strategize their next success.”

About ExecuNet
Since 1988, ExecuNet has helped business leaders shape positive change to achieve what’s next in their individual lives. From its beginnings as a small gathering of executives in Connecticut, ExecuNet has evolved into a private network of over 250,000 senior-level executive members with a belief in the transformative potential of trusted insight, real connections and personal introductions to help them find meaningful new work, advance in their careers, better manage the growth of their businesses, and become high-value leaders. A recognized authority in executive employment, retention and recruitment, as well as human capital trends, ExecuNet keeps its members informed about what’s important to them in business and their careers.

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Mark M. Anderson, President & Chief Economist
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