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Would You Hire an Olympic Athlete?

Ian Cameron Aug 5, 2016 6:30:00 AM


iStock_20760073_MEDIUM.jpgHave you ever wondered what it takes to be an Olympian? With the Rio Olympics upon us, we decided it might be fun to explore the profile of an Olympic athlete using The McQuaig System and look at what type of employee they might make. 

If you’re familiar with the McQuaig System skip this paragraph. For those who don’t know, here’s a summary: The McQuaig System is an online assessment tool that allows companies to define and benchmark jobs, profile and assess candidates against those benchmarks, and hire and develop them in a way that maximizes their potential.

For this exercise, we used the McQuaig Job Survey to profile the ideal behavioral attributes of an Olympic athlete. Based on some assumptions about the kind of driven person who has what it takes to become a world-class athlete, the McQuaig System identified the ideal athlete as a Pioneer profile.

An individual fitting the Pioneer profile is:

  • extremely competitive, ambitious and goal-oriented
  • tackles projects and situations aggressively
  • enjoys overcoming objections/resistance and achieving goals in the face of obstacles
  • has a sense of urgency to get things done quickly
  • works well under pressure and deadlines
  • wants to take charge and show some initiative

If you’re managing (or coaching) an individual like this, here are some tips to get the most from them:

  • they need constant challenges and opportunities
  • they may take chances to get ahead
  • they are internally motivated

In the business world, you might see this person as a tough-minded, hard-driving, but fair leader in the role of CFO, CEO or senior operations. In fact, a 2005 study of McQuaig Survey data showed that the Pioneer profile was the second most common profile amongst senior executives.  

If you’re looking to hire for a role that requires the temperament of an Olympic athlete, the easy-to-use McQuaig System can help you profile any number of candidates, identify strong matches to the success criteria you establish and make a better hiring decision.  

If you'd like to learn more about how benchmarking roles and profiling candidates' temperament against those benchmarks can help you make better hiring decisions, request a free demo or give us a call. 

What do you think makes an Olympian tick?

Topics: Recruitment, Job Search, Productivity

Ian Cameron

Written by Ian Cameron

Ian Cameron is the Managing Director of The McQuaig Institute®. He has more than 20 years of Human Resource and Organizational Development consulting experience. Throughout his career Ian’s focus has been on helping organizations realize their goals through their people and helping people live their passion through their work.