As an HR professional, people often ask me: “How can I develop my career at Celanese? What are the traits the company truly likes? “
Through my job, I have had the opportunity to discuss this idea of talent with senior leaders. I’d like to share some of their unique insights on talent and what makes a successful manager.
First, what’s the most impressive trait an employee has? I had that conversation with a senior executive once. Here is what he said. “We have many employees who graduated from reputable universities with good professional knowledge. Their second language English is better than mine. All these are good. But what I really like is their passion on the job. I don’t care what their major is – science, engineering or others. I don’t care where they come from. I believe all talented people have one common thing and that’s they love their jobs. With passion, they will learn proactively and quickly, they will overcome difficulty and failure in the work, they don’t mind taking on extra responsibilities, they will be more creative, they will get things done and more important, they will spread the feeling of achievement to others working with them. That’s the talent I am looking for.”
We look for employees with passion, but what else do we expect from our people managers? Just like another company I worked before, Celanese looks at the result of a manager. The difference is Celanese pays special attention to manager’s ability to attract and develop his team. Here is what a senior executive shared with me. “I visit all my sites at least once each year. During my visit, the most important thing is to meet my skip level team. In those meetings, one on ones, lunches, and dinners, I look at how many new talented people my subordinate has attracted, how is the development of other team members, do they progress well enough? I can read my subordinate’s results in my Dallas office, but I need to make the assessment with my ears and eyes on the ability of my subordinate to attract and develop his team. No matter how good the result, he will never be a future leader if he cannot attract and develop his team.”