5 Words Underscore Values, Win Jobs at JetBlue


Knowing what a company expects to hear from job applicants is often a mystery, plus it’s generally difficult to find much in public literature about the culture of an organization.  So, I was intrigued to learn what JetBlue looks for when it interviews job applicants. 

David Barger, president and chief executive of  the popular “low-price” airline, appears in the Corner Office column of today’s New York Times. 

Responding to a question about what he looks for and the types of questions he asks, Barger stressed the need to work within JetBlue’s culture and he listed the five values they also seek to assess.

“To me, what’s most important, beyond the skill set, is the organizational fit — does the person truly understand what we’re trying to accomplish here, Barger said.  “I want somebody who’s comfortable in a conference room, but at the same time will board an airplane and introduce himself or herself to the customers.

“We have specific questions for interviews about past experiences, which are the best predictors of future behavior, and they’re tied to our values — safety, caring, integrity, fun and passion,” Barger explained.  “We truly ask people about past experiences with those five words in mind and try to lift out of the conversation whether they are the right fit for the organization.”

4 thoughts on “5 Words Underscore Values, Win Jobs at JetBlue

  1. The impression I got from Barger’s words is that PR professionals need to be really well rounded. I am getting ready to graduate with a PR degree in December and I have to say that is actually a bit of relief for me. Even work experience I have that isn’t a direct PR job will be beneficial to my job search. Do you have any other good tips for landing a job in PR?

    1. Sara: Since you don’t have direct PR/internshipo experience, it’s good you majored in PR. Otherwise, the task of landing a PR job is even tougher. Fewer seniors graduate in December so you’ll have an advantage with the first-of-year hiring that often increases once agency and corporate budgets are established. Seek out some relevant volunteer work for the next few months to beef up your resume, plus the contacts you make may lead to opportunities that occur more often than not through word of mouth.

  2. I love when in an interview, a professional asks me to go into deeper detail about an experience or accomplishment on my resume. It really gives me hope that I stand out. One question I have concerns the application process:
    In a cover letter, is it okay to talk about a recent or qualifying position or experience? I feel like I could easily tie in JetBlue’s values. However I’m worried I talk too much about another position and focus too little on the company I am applying for. Thoughts anyone?

  3. I would have to agree with Megan’s post. I usually like to talk about past experiences and tie in skills I used there or qualities I developed that are relevent to the position I am applying for. However, how much is too much when you are speaking about past experiences?
    Also, if you can’t find much about an organization’s culture in public literature how should we go about trying to fit in to their culture? Is it best to see how the interview goes and hope that you have the right personality to fit in to the culture or is it important to make them realize that you DO fit in?

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