What makes a good employee? Posted 6 months ago by Nick Boulton

I’ve been asked a lot recently by new members of the Client Server team, what makes a good employee, or more accurately, what will make them successful?

That along with an interesting conversation with a client about the pros and cons of working from home on a team’s productivity got me thinking about the traits and attributes that make up a good employee, no matter what industry they work in or what market they face.

In today’s competitive job market, potential employers are constantly seeking out the best talent to drive their business forward. While skills and qualifications are important, being a “good employee” reaches beyond a CV. It’s made up of a whole range of ingredients combined with certain qualities that not only make a person exceptional at their job but also a valuable asset to a company.

By far the most important one to me is if they are a genuinely good person. Do they not only strive to achieve goals and targets for themselves and the business but are kind, helpful, honest, and respectful?


Here are some qualities that if helped to cultivate can make for a top-class employee.

Strong Work Ethic: Having a strong work ethic is the cornerstone of any good employee, diligence, reliability, commitment, and drive are at the heart of being successful. Punctuality, self-awareness, and being willing to go the extra mile will set the good ones apart.

Positive Attitude: Starting any new job is hard but having a positive can-do attitude is contagious and will significantly impact your colleagues and team's outlook. Good employees bring optimism and enthusiasm to their work, motivating others to improve themselves and their work environment.

Initiative: Good employees proactively approach each day at work, they are constantly trying to learn and solve problems on the job. They don’t wait for instruction and absorb the office culture through a form of natural osmosis, constantly seeking opportunities to enhance their skills and accelerate their learning curves.

Emotional Intelligence: Having the ability to empathise, handle conflicts, build strong relationships, and confidently communicate with anyone in the business is hugely attractive to potential employers and essential to thriving in competitive environments.

Adaptability: The world of commerce is constantly changing and especially in today’s rapidly evolving technology-driven markets, the ability to adapt to what is in front of you is crucial. Good employees embrace change and are quick to adjust to new circumstances, technologies, and markets. 


While possessing the right skills and qualifications is essential, what truly sets a good employee apart is their attitude, values, and interpersonal skills. Too many people just see a job as a job, but with unemployment set to rise, and no signs of the cost of living easing or interest rates coming down any time soon, you need to make sure you value your job opportunity. Employers don’t want to be carrying dead weight in these uncertain times, no matter how experienced you are. 

Continually adapting, having effective communication, teamwork, initiative, continuous learning, integrity, positive attitude, time management, and emotional intelligence can help not only become an asset to your organisation but also to achieving personal and professional growth.

At the end of the day being a good employee is not just about excelling in the workplace, it's about making a positive impact on everyone around you and leaving a lasting impression on your journey to success. Value your opportunities!