Leadership

Lyft HR exec: This is the No. 1 trait you should show employers during a job interview

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Ride-hailing app Lyft has hit a few milestones within the last few months. In October, Google's parent company Alphabet invested $1 billion into the startup and the company completed half a billion rides since its founding. In November, Lyft opened a permanent office in New York as it looks to grow its team of engineers.

Now valued at $11.5 billion, Lyft is seeking top talent as it continues to expand its operations. So how does one go about scoring a job at the company? Emily Nishi, Lyft's Chief People Officer, says the No.1 trait she looks for in candidates is authenticity.

"We really believe that applicants should be themselves and live authentically," she tells CNBC Make It.

Showing your authentic self can be demonstrated in a number of ways, Nishi explains, primarily by being transparent about your background. For new graduates, she says to discuss your university experiences and share your five or 10-year plan.

Meanwhile, mid and senior-level applicants should give detailed information about your work history and what's important to you. Nishi says that she also wants candidates to freely ask questions about the company when the opportunity arises.

"I want the candidate to ask me everything that's on their mind because choosing a job is a big commitment," she explains. For example, you may have to uproot and move your family to a new location. If you're a recent graduate, you may have student loans that could factor into your decision-making.

Being authentic and open about what you're seeking and your background also gives hiring managers a comprehensive overview of who you are and allows them to determine how you would fit in with their company culture, according to Nishi, who worked at YouTube prior to starting at Lyft.

At Lyft, the HR team looks for candidates who exemplify their core values and who are able to "create fearlessly," be proactive, make things happen and, most importantly, uplift others.

She also wants candidates who are customer-focused. "We care a lot about our passengers and the driver experience," she says. In fact, Nishi explains that Lyft was the first ride-hailing app to introduce tipping drivers.

With headquarters in San Francisco and a large operation in Nashville, Lyft now employs over 2,000 workers and is looking to hire more. Nishi says that the company is looking to fill many roles in various sectors including engineering, product and design, and operations.

Though technical skills are necessary for some of these roles, the HR exec says "what we look for fundamentally is someone who really demonstrates or values."

"We are looking for great people who want to build the company," Nishi adds.

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