Should You Hire Based on Enthusiasm?


It’s a problem just about every hiring manager has faced: Candidate A is fresh out of college, with no work experience to speak of, but is very enthusiastic and knowledgeable about the company. Candidate B has all the experience and qualifications you could ask for, but seems less than eager about the job. Who do you choose?

Candidate A – Enthusiasm Over Experience

We often say enthusiasm is infectious, and that’s true – a new employee’s enthusiasm can bring up the morale of the entire department. Even customers or clients can be positively affected by a fresh-faced worker.

On the other hand, how long will that enthusiasm last? Have you ever been excited to start a new job, only to find out after a few weeks it wasn’t what you thought it would be? That’s a risk you take when you hire solely based on an applicant’s enthusiasm.

Candidate B – Experience Above All Else

Looking only at experience will not ensure you get the best candidate, either. It’s true that experience shows a great amount of technical skill. And you will save the company time and money that would be spent in training an inexperienced new hire. But to quote from Small Business Bonfire, “Technical skills can be taught. Personality cannot.”

Balance and Individual Consideration

So, we can’t tell you whether to hire Candidate A or Candidate B because the answer depends on a variety of other factors.

  • How quickly do you need the new hire to be working independently?
  • How does each candidate fit into the company’s overall culture?
  • Is the company in a position to spend the money and time needed to train an inexperienced candidate?
  • Could the position benefit from having a new hire molded to fit the company’s standards, rather than someone who is set in their ways from years of experience?

The best way to hire is to keep a balanced attitude towards enthusiasm; it is important, but it’s not enough. Technical skills can be taught, but not to everyone. If a candidate does not have past experience, they must at least have aptitude. Finding the right balance of experience and enthusiasm will make for the best possible new hire.

To narrow your search to only the top candidates in Oregon, use one of the top staffing firms in Oregon. Let us help you find the best blend of enthusiasm and experience!

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