Land the Job

Facebook exec says these are the 2 traits you need to have to get hired at the company

Maxine Williams
Photo courtesy of Facebook

Facebook has nearly 40,000 full-time employees at work in offices around the world, and regularly ranks high on lists of the most attractive employers

So what's the company looking for when it hunts for talent? Maxine Williams, Facebook's global chief diversity officer, tells CNBC Make It that there are two traits the company looks for in potential hires, and it's important to be able to demonstrate both. Candidates who end up getting hired and being successful at Facebook, Wiliams says, are both learners and builders.

The company wants candidates who are not only thoughtful about challenges, but interested in helping solve them. "We bring you in here and say, 'Here are the problems we want you to solve,' and you help us solve them," Williams says. "If we already knew what to do, we wouldn't need you, we wouldn't be trying to hire more people."

When it comes to interviewing to work at Facebook, Williams advises applicants to stay curious and thoughtful but also demonstrate how to practically solve a problem without being too philosophical about it. 

You could be brilliant on your own, but if you can't work with other people that's not going to work for us.
Maxine Williams
Global chief diversity officer, Facebook

"We want to see how you practice, but show me you're a learner," Williams says. "While you're working on that coding problem, speak about what you're thinking, why you're going from this step to that step, so we understand your thinking process, your learning process — that's really important for us."

And while learning and building are essential skills for every Facebook employee and potential hire, the company also looks for collaborators.

"You could be brilliant on your own, but if you can't work with other people that's not going to work for us," Williams says. "Show us how you collaborate, because that learning and that building happens with other people."

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