The Role Of The Personality Hire Who Brings The Workplace ‘Vibes’


The TikTok trend of "personality hires" has drawn attention as many young workers, especially Gen Z, advocate for being hired based on their personalities and the positive energy they bring to the workplace. A personality hire is expected to provide humor, banter, and levity to "set the vibes," sometimes compensating for perceived deficiencies in skills or a lackadaisical approach to attendance and punctuality. This trend has sparked a debate regarding the value of hiring based on the ability to create a positive work environment rather than solely on technical skills and qualifications. It has also contributed to the broader discussion about evolving dynamics in the labor market, particularly as the economy shows signs of slowing.

Vibes-based hiring highlights the increasing significance of workplace culture over purely technical skill requirements. While it risks prioritizing personality fit over finding the objectively best candidate for a role, it underscores the importance of the work environment. Technical skills can be taught, but likability and personality fit can be more challenging to instill later. While technical skills and experience remain important, likeability and mission alignment hold added value in a competitive hiring market. Unique personalities that align with staff and reflect corporate branding can have a substantial impact on business, especially when combined with competence.

The "personality hires" concept aligns with the traditional emphasis on good communication and social skills in the hiring process. While possessing the necessary skills, experience, and knowledge is crucial, managers often seek intangibles. They value individuals who excel in small talk, connect easily with others, and possess a sense of humor. Even if an interviewee possesses all the necessary attributes for job success, employers involved in the hiring process might hesitate to extend an offer if they don't connect with the candidate on a personal level.

Personality hires might not boast the most impressive resumes, but they bring the mindset and attitude needed to succeed. Here's how they can add value to an organization:

1. Effective Communication: Personality hires excel in communication, crucial for collaboration, project planning and execution, and conveying messages to clients or stakeholders. Their strong communication skills help foster positive relationships and defuse workplace tension. This trait is particularly important for professionals in customer-centric or management roles, as they can effectively promote products or services and handle challenging situations.  

Nurturing Relationships

Cultivating and maintaining solid relationships has become an integral part of business success. Personality hires can establish authentic social connections by understanding the needs of others and finding common ground. Building this strong rapport creates a foundation of trust and credibility.

In the workplace, this can help boost engagement and performance, reduce turnover, and increase retention, as these personality hires promote a positive, inclusive environment. They are typically the employees who remember and plan in-office birthday celebrations. They can recount personal details about you, like your kids’ names and ages or your favorite sports team. They’re not shy in doling out compliments and words of affirmation to their peers and are the ones who will rally everyone in times of adversity.

On the client side, personality hires play the long game, hoping these social connections will prove instrumental in attaining business growth and opportunities. People prefer to do business with professionals they trust and like. The personality will bring referrals to the organization.

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