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The “Unimportant People” Could Determine If You Get Hired

“How did he treat the unimportant people you saw that day?”

When I hired new salespeople, I always had them spend a day with one of our more experienced representatives. Why? Because over time, I realized the impressions I had about them in an interview did not give me the full picture. When I asked that question of my experienced representative, I got a quick insight into that candidate’s character.

A candidate who walked past receptionists, support staff or even janitorial staff without acknowledging them was not going to get the job. Some candidates were often very engaging with the decision-makers, but they ignored the “unimportant people”.

If you are in your twenties, this blog series is meant to help prepare you for becoming a Leader of Character before anyone gives you an official title of leader. How do you become the person you would want to follow, and therefore someone whom others would want to follow?

Look back on the scenario above and ask yourself how committed you would be to a leader who only pays attention to people who can do something for them. If a leader focuses their attention to only those that will help them prosper and ignores everyone else, what would you call that leader? Uncaring. Self-centered. Two-faced. Selfish.

When someone takes the time to acknowledge another human being, ask them their name, and displays a level of kindness to someone who is not in an “important” position, that is a person people will want to follow in the future. Those people inspire buy-in, loyalty and commitment from the people around them. They demonstrate through their actions that they are selfless Leaders of Character.

Selflessness is a habit. Being self-centered is a habit as well.

Our choices form our habits. How can we choose to exercise Selflessness with unimportant people?

  • Look the convenience store clerk in the eye and use her name when you say “thank you”.

  • Speak with the security guard at the front desk when you walk in a building.

  • Show interest in who your waiter is and their background.

  • Help the “cart guy” at Walmart corral a runaway shopping cart.

When you begin to look around you, at the people you encounter daily, you will realize you have opportunities every day to exercise Selflessness. Those exercises in Selflessness strengthen your character and make you a better leader. In fact, they will make you a better person.


  • Who is someone you can begin to acknowledge today?

  • Why does this small action impact our character?


“Would you follow you?” That is a critical question we all need to ask ourselves if we want to become Leaders of Character. Research has proven that people want to follow character. But where is your character today?

Here is a quick assessment that will take you 5 minutes to figure it out. Nobody will ever see your results but you.

Warning: If you are not going to be honest with yourself this is a worthless assessment.

To take the assessment use the QR code above or go to

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