A former Sony exec says the key trait she looks for in hires won’t be found on a résumé

Susan L. Jurevics

Susan L. Jurevics

Pottermore CEO Susan Jurevics goes out of her way to recruit people who will be a perfect fit on her 45-person team.

When it comes time to hire someone new, Susan Jurevics isn’t only looking for an outstanding résumé.

The former Sony exec and current Pottermore CEO finds it takes a certain kind of worker to succeed at the digital publishing and entertainment company that runs the official Harry Potter website.

In 2016, Reuters reported that Pottermore’s revenue “doubled year on year to 15.1 million pounds ($19 million),” largely thanks to the site’s push to sell its ebook and audio book products through other companies like Amazon and Apple.

Pottermore is growing fast.

That’s why, when hiring job candidates, Jurevics goes out of her way to recruit people who will be a perfect fit on her 45-person team.

So, what personality trait is Jurevics looking out for while evaluating new hires?

Beyond standard skill sets and basic competency, Jurevics says that she looks for candidates who exude one quality in particular: gratitude.

“We look for people who are just really excited to be in these seats,” she told Business Insider.

She explains that not everyone at Pottermore is necessarily a mega-Harry Potter fan.

“But you’re not really going to be very successful here if you haven’t read the books and you don’t have an affinity for the wizarding world — even a respectful, distant affinity — and what we’re doing here and what JK Rowling is doing as a writer,” she says. “I remind everyone that these are really privleged and coveted seats. To be able to work for JK Rowling in her company at a time where the franchise is expanding so widely and in such an exciting way, everyone that works here really has to bring their A game every day.”

At the end of the day, a killer skill set or a knowledge of tricky wizarding trivia (like Nearly Headless Nick’s real name) might help you out, but they won’t get you too far. What really matters at a company like Pottermore is tackling every day like you’re excited to be there.

Gratitude is a skill you can learn — it’s a habit you can cultivate in both your personal and professional life. Not only can it help you receive (and keep) a job at a competitive company like Pottermore, but cultivating gratitude can even make you more healthy, confident, and wealthy.

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