A Magazine Executive Who's Been Hiring for 25 Years Explains Why She Doesn't Care About Your Experience

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Donna Ward/ABACA USALinda Well, founding editor-in-chief of Allure.
By Rachel Gillett

The first thing most hiring managers consider when evaluating a job candidate is their experience — Elon Musk, for one, prefers to surround himself with a team chock full of problem-solving experience.

But Linda Wells, the founding editor-in-chief of beauty magazine Allure, takes an alternative approach to finding the best people.

"Experience is always good, but I don't think it's the be all and end all," she tells Business Insider.Instead, she says the people who have worked at Allure and succeeded have all shared a few vital qualities, namely: a "lively, curious mind," a "total hunger for taking on a new project," "a desire to work really, really hard and to do whatever it takes," fearlessness in the face of failure, and the ability to revel in the work itself and not be "too hungry for titles and promotions."

Wells says she often hires people without a lot of experience and expects them to pay attention and learn on the job.

"I tell everybody on the junior-most level that you are not being judged for your reporting and writing — you don't know how to do that yet," Wells says. "If your first ten efforts aren't wildly successful, don't worry about it because it's understood that you have to learn on the job."
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