Donald Trump: How to Hear 'You're Hired!'

donald trumpDonald Trump could well be the most famous boss in the world. Not only does he employ thousands, but he also fires hundreds and hires a handful on national television. Each week on NBC's 'The Apprentice,' be it staffed with celebrities or regular folk, he doles out employment information that is heard and heeded by millions.

And he had to work his way to the top. Just because Trump's father was a New York real estate developer doesn't mean he reached his current position in life and business by nepotism. He was the fourth of five children, and paid his dues by graduating from the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania in 1968, then gradually ascended from the basement of his father's business before branching out and starting his own.

Regardless of the privilege and power he can bestow on his progeny, Trump insists that his children get degrees as well, and earn his respect, as well as the respect of world business leaders. He does not cavalierly hand out positions in the empire he's worked so diligently to create.

Recently, "The Donald" descended from his throne atop real estate, hospitality, media and retail empires to chat with AOL Jobs about the secrets of his success, and to share tips on how us little people can hear those golden words: "You're hired!"

Q. How did you get started?

A. I worked with my father, Fred C. Trump, who was a real estate developer in the suburbs of Manhattan. I learned about the business from an early age and continued working with him for a while after graduating college and before starting out on my own in Manhattan.

Q. To what do you attribute your success?

A. I had a great mentor and example: my father. I learned a great deal from him and I watched him work for many years. I also loved what I was doing. I had a passion for real estate, and I believe that is the most important thing. You have to love what you're doing.

Q. What do you know now that you wish you knew at the beginning?

A. The importance of focus. When I had a financial turnaround in the early '90s, I realized I had lost my focus. (Editor's note: 1989-1997 were tough years for Trump. Atlantic City Casino, the Taj Mahal, the Trump Plaza Hotel and the Trump Shuttle all failed in one way or another. Trump filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy and at one time was in debt to the tune of $3.5 billion. It took amazingly savvy negotiating, and a giant helping of faith and trust in him by his creditors, for him to rebound.)

Q. What was one of the biggest obstacles you had to overcome in your career and how did you handle it?

A. When I had troubles in the '90s, I decided to deal with the situation by seeing it as a blip and not a catastrophe. I also focused on the solution, and not the problem. I refused to give in to difficult circumstances.

Q. Describe your ideal employee.

A. Someone who is focused, loyal, dedicated, passionate and intelligent -- meaning they can think on their own as well as be a team player.

Q. What employee traits or behaviors are most annoying to you?

A. Disloyalty and tardiness, and not doing their best every day.

Q. Give us some quick tips on how someone can stand out in the job market.


AOL Jobs Asks
Donald Trump
5 Quick Questions

1. What was your first job? I worked with my father in his real estate office in Brooklyn, N.Y.

2. What inspires you? Skyscrapers, golf courses, great architecture, design, 'The Apprentice,' beautiful women, making deals, negotiating ... it's a long list.

3. What is the most important trait needed to succeed? Tenacity. Never giving up.

4. What is your biggest challenge? Today and tomorrow. They have to be great.

5. What is the best career advice you ever received? My father told me to "know everything you can about what you're doing," and he gave me his four-step formula for success: "Get in, get it done, get it done right, and get out."

  • Know what you're doing and what you want, and make it clear.
  • Be enthusiastic. Prove that you're the right person by being passionate about the position and/or industry.
  • Exude confidence. If you know what you're doing, that should be easy.
  • Don't brag too much. It can be taken the wrong way. Being confident doesn't have to include too many of your greatest accomplishments.

Q. How about some tips for getting noticed by the boss?


  • Do a great job.
  • Do a great job every day.
  • Be plugged into the organization as a whole -- not just your own position. Have a comprehensive overview and keep it updated.
  • Be passionate about your work. Never let it become just a job.

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Katrina Diane Hoffma

I possess all the requirements asked of me.Trump I need to know how to address him please. Their are many ideas I have discussed with several people. I do think I can be an asset. Thank you

June 17 2015 at 12:57 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Heard you on CNBC today, July 29th. Mr. Trump, I sure am glad to hear you would still consider running for President. Do you not agree that the Speaker looked rather presidential the other evening? He even spoke so strong and convincing. Unfortunately, the new GOP Congressional members do not know politics and how you have to be strong enough to compromise to get the job done. Here is still watching and listening for the Trump Call. Regards, Barbara Leonard, Myrtle Beach, SC

July 29 2011 at 4:04 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Whoops !!
I didn't expect to hear from you !!
But since you are listening let me cingratulate you on your work !!
And while we are chatting let me introduce my son John to you.
John is my only son . Like me he is a Harvard graduate.
But unliike me, he has been unsucessful in finding a career job.
I'm a retired professor of mathematics .
He and I have just returned from a wonderful three month vacation in Florida..
It's been fine for me ... but I'm a bit woried of John's chances once I pass on ...(I celebrated my eightieth birthday yesterday.)
I'm a bit worried about John's life once I depart this earth.
Would you have an opening for John? You should spend an hour with him. He has the memory of an elephant. But he's been unable to convert his fabulous memory into a paying job.
Professor Emeritus Walt Mierzejewski

March 08 2011 at 3:35 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply


January 28 2011 at 12:29 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply


January 27 2011 at 10:10 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

ole donald doesnt care to mention he about went to prison back in the 80s,,lied,falsified and owed the IRS millions and millions,,all wew got was a lefthanded OOPS,slippsies hmmmmm,,ya silly ole senoir bebier

January 27 2011 at 8:22 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Yo Don~
It looks like you could use some actual sunshine. That liquid tan your using makes you look juandiced...Just a thought! Oh, and a little neck Lipo wouldn't hurt either...

January 27 2011 at 8:10 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Is Donald Trump A Member of

The Hairclub For Men?

Is He Satisfied With The Club?

January 27 2011 at 7:45 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

I read that "The Donald" was going to make a run for the white house, he already has my vote if he does.Boy a power house White House "The Donald" pres. Bill Clinton Vice Pres. , I can see 'The Donald firing China, and bringing jobs back to America, and Bill just be as coloful as ever and making things really interesting around Washington.

January 27 2011 at 5:59 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to Brad's comment

I can See High Rise Casinos in Washington!

January 27 2011 at 7:54 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Is it just me or does every picture of the DONALD look like he's constipated. Like he's straning like hell to have a bowel movement.

January 27 2011 at 5:49 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

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