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ABSTRACT. What do employers expect from recent business graduates or interns? And how do they think business schools should prepare students for their new positions? This practitioner-oriented article reviews these two questions which were addressed to a sample of executives in various job functions and across a wide range of industries. The answers are as surprising as they are enlightening: above all else, employers want new interns or entry-level employees to have “the right attitude,” outstanding communication skills and the ability to adapt and be flexible. The research methodology is based on 27 Swiss executives across seven industries and 4 senior management categories surveyed in individual 30 minute open-ended question interviews. The authors frame the responses in a three-level personal attributes framework which has been developed based on current literature in professional learning and development. This connects the attributes to the five stages of professional mastery. They also discuss the impact of these findings for business schools and close with suggestions for further research to deepen this discussion. pp. 43–55
JEL Codes: E24; J21; M51

Keywords: employment criteria; hiring criteria; graduate students; soft skills; employer requirement; recruiting graduates; business school

How to cite: Muff, Katrin, and Mary Mayenfisch (2014), "'The Right Attitude' as a Key Hiring Criterion for Graduate Students in Switzerland," Psychosociological Issues in Human Resource Management 2(2): 43–55.

KATRIN MUFF
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Business School Lausanne, Switzerland 
MARY MAYENFISCH
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Business School Lausanne, Switzerland

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