Unicorns are hard to catch. In the 1500s, it was a belief that only fair and young maidens can get the trust of these elusive and horned creatures.
I am not a fair maiden. Still, in my time, I had the luck of getting close to numerous magical unicorns, in the disguise of “unicorn” employees. Don’t be confused with unicorn companies like the start-ups which are valued at $1 billion or more and “unicorn” employees are those staff who possess a distinctive set of qualities which make them extremely different and valuable. Like the actual unicorns, they are also hard to find, but once they are hired they offer many benefits in the workplace. To name some, they smash expectations, raise the bar for everybody and are simply fun to be around.
Here are the five key qualities of unicorn employees:
You aren’t limited by your job title:
In the span of 5 years, a tech company named Hootsuite, went from a 100- to a 1000-person global company. Throughout the stage of “hyper growth,” the employees who actually flourished were intellectually curious and flexible.
Later, as the company grew more, unicorn employees joined and jumped at every chance to dive deeper into specific, growing areas of business. Some of them even decided to move horizontally across several departments. The unicorn employees make surprising jumps like one went from financial specialist to become a software engineer. This very important for employee growth that recently a new pilot initiative, called the “stretch program,” was launched for helping people expand their knowledge and expertise across the business and also grow their unicorn horns.
You think big and small:
Exceptional (Unicorn) employees have the ability to think strategically. This means that they have the ability to take a step back and then see the overall goals of the company or the industry as a whole, and then finally apply it to your work. To be effective in their business, they see the big picture.
You’re respectful by nature:
The capability to work well with others is a skill which benefits all the employees at any workplace. It seems enough simple, however you would be surprised.
Unicorn employees are respectful by nature and they never treat anyone regardless of that person’s title. It is that quality which sets a stellar employee apart from an average employee. Actually, this is so important to do with the well-being of the staff, it’s been built into most of the companies’ values: “Respect the individual,” and “lead with humility.”
You get all the shot done:
Few years back, LinkedIn CEO Mr. Jeff Weiner had written a status update: “In simplest terms possible, the people I most enjoy working with dream big, get sh*t done, and know how to have fun.”
The update blew up and the tens of thousands of people commented and liked it. Like him, I am also a huge supporter of having fun at work and believe that it is vital to success. Although, I can’t stress on how important it is for people on the job, to be able to get shit done. No matter how great a co-worker is to be around, if he or she can’t produce actual results, his or her presence is not helpful and may be even seen as damaging to others. Great teams can be damaged by a single member (who can’t get shit done).
The bottom line is that: At the end of the day, you can be multi-talented, respectful, detail-oriented, tenacious, and also a big thinker. However, if you don’t yield real results and move the needle of the clock, all those traits are exploited. You should be able to perform. It’s an essential unicorn quality.
Blog By – Hemangini Mahajan
YOMA Business Solutions
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