Aussie Boss Won't Hire Anyone Who Fails The 'Coffee Cup Test'

There is one thing all Xero Australia employees have in common and it isn't a sleek resume or a good suit.

They've all passed the famous 'coffee cup test'.

The managing director of the $8.5 billion accounting software firm, Trent Innes, refuses to hire anyone who doesn't offer to take their coffee cup back to the kitchen post-interview.

The sneaky tactic is all about clocking a person's attitude and ownership.

"As soon as you come in and you do meet me, I will always take you for a walk down to one of our kitchens and somehow you always end up walking away with a drink — whether it be a glass of water, a coffee, or a cup of tea, or even a soft drink," he explained in the The Venture Podcast.

"And then we take that back, have our interview, and one of the things I'm always looking for at the end of the interview is, does the person doing the interview want to take that empty cup back to the kitchen?" he continued.

Trent Innes has a strict coffee cup rule for all employees Photo: TWITTER

It's one of the simplest tasks carried out in an office, but it affects and involves every single person, regardless of their role.

Innes explained that the test ensures that each employee has a good attitude and will help to drive a culture of ownership.

"You can develop skills, you can gain knowledge and gain experience but it really does come down to attitude."

"Especially in a fast growth company or a start-up environment or scale up environment -- you need people with a really strong growth mindset and that comes back to their attitude," Innes said.

Photo: GETTY

Only about five to 10 percent of interviewees fail to offer to take their cup back to the kitchen, so resume, skills and knowledge still hold some weight.

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But the lesson here is: if you're the kind of person who leaves a half-full mug sitting in the sink awaiting the cleaner to find it a spot in the dishwasher, don't apply for a job at Xero.