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I talked to 1,000 of the world’s top CEOs—here’s the No. 1 question they want you to ask at a job interview

By | Robert Reiss |

As the host of the radio program the “The CEO Show” for the last 15 years, I’ve interviewed more than 1,000 of the world’s top CEOs.

These leaders all come from different backgrounds, from Marriott to McDonald’s to Marvel. But all agreed on the No. 1 question a candidate should ask at a job interview: “What traits will help me succeed long-term at the company?”

Employers are moved and impressed by people who are proactive and who get straight to the point, so this is a great first question to ask. I also love how surprisingly simple it is.

Based on my conversations, here are five traits that employers value the most:

1. You keep your promises.

“People rarely do what they say they’ll do,” one CEO told me. “So when I meet someone who actually does, I know I can trust them.”

This means if you say you’ll call at 3 p.m., don’t call at 3:02. If you say you’ll send your resume on Tuesday, don’t do it Wednesday morning.

2. You are a lifelong learner.

From a hiring standpoint, lifelong learners are the best investment, because they will continue to add more value with every new thing that they absorb and explore.

They might take extra courses, attend more seminars, read a lot, seek out mentors, or take on new assignments.

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