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11 Questions to Help Identify Top Talent

We spoke to Carlo Frappolli, JPMorgan Chase & Co.’s Head of Talent, about the 11 attributes of a strong leader that form the basis of talent management at JPMorgan Chase.
February 29, 2016
  1. Does this person set high standards? “It’s really about whether or not someone holds others accountable to his or her own high standards,” said Frappolli. “Because a lot of people who get into leadership roles have Type-A personalities, are driven to succeed and tend to focus on their own standards—but they don’t necessarily hold others to those same standards.”
  2. Does he or she treat others with respect? Consider this: Would you want one of your children to work for this person? If you have to pause in answering, think twice before promoting him or her.
  3. Does this employee manage performance? Does he or she provide honest and direct feedback on a consistent basis? Can he or she judge performance in an objective way and make decisions based on meritocracy?
  4. Does he or she execute discipline? “Also ask: Is this person thorough in his or her business reviews?” said Frappolli. “Does he or she have good governance and controls?”
  5. Does this person exhibit fortitude? “When I look at people who are successful, fortitude comes right to the top,” Frappolli told attendees. “Because if you can’t take feedback—if you can’t fail and pick yourself back up without losing confidence—you will struggle in a leadership role.”
  6. Does this person face facts? Does he or she let the numbers tell the story, instead of trying to spin them to make situations look better?
  7. Does he or she foster open partnerships? Does this person really encourage people to say what’s on their minds?
  8. Does he or she have humanity? Consider whether or not this person shows compassion. Can he or she drive for high performance, hold people accountable, and yet, when others are struggling, try to understand why they’re struggling? “Does he or she then have the guts to make a tough call, like letting people go?” asked Frappolli. “It’s tough—I’ve found that some people are pretty binary in that way. They’re either too nice to make a tough call, wait way too long to do it or they’re just cold and disrespectful.”
  9. Does this person set clients up for success? At the end of the day, does he or she ask the question, “Is this the right option for our client?”
  10. Does he or she believe in innovation? “Innovation happens in many phases,” said Frappolli, “but often, it’s in small steps. What does this person do to help his or her team and clients constantly improve?”
  11. Does this person think strategically? Is he or she intellectually curious? Does he or she ask the question, “why?” Does he or she know what’s going on in the industry? Is he or she aware of what your competitors are doing and whether or not they’re doing something better than you are?

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