People often talk about work ethic and what it means in terms of the right candidate for a job. But work ethic is a difficult trait to pin down. What exactly is it, and how can you showcase yours? Selling your work ethic in an interview may be the key to landing that job offer. Here are a few ways you can emphasize your specific work ethic to a potential employer.

Talk About the Times You Went Above and Beyond

Work ethic is all about your attitude and how much you’re willing to do for the job. For many employers, that is your ability to go above and beyond expectations. There are plenty of things in your experience that can give them this perspective, so talk about those projects or aspects of your previous jobs.

Demonstrate Your Reliability

People also lump attendance and tardiness in with work ethic. Employers looking for someone with a good work ethic want someone to show up on time and do their job to the best of their ability. Share with them how you’re reliable and will show up on time every day. That doesn’t mean emergencies can’t happen, or you can’t take your allotted days off. They want to know that it won’t be habitual.

Show How You Don’t Back Down from Failure

It’s not failure that is the problem for most people; it’s how they handle themselves in the aftermath. You can’t be afraid to experience failure, but you have to show them that you’re resilient and able to bounce back and even learn a lesson from experience. Talk about a time when something didn’t go according to plan and how you recovered from it.

Have Great References

Finally, make sure you have excellent references in place before you start interviewing. Contact anyone you worked with in the past who might be able to speak on your behalf. Be sure you talk to them ahead of time, so a phone call does not blindside them. You want to pick people who are willing to talk about your positive contribution and valuable work ethic on the job.

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