How to Find an Employer With a Stand-Out Company Culture
You hear a lot about company culture these days. Job seekers want to find a good cultural fit, and employers are focused on creating an overall positive workplace culture.
In fact, of the 700 talent acquisition leaders surveyed in a LinkedIn U.S./Canada Recruiting Trends report, 81% believe company culture has a significant impact on sourcing and placing candidates. The problem is, many of us—employees and employers alike—have the wrong idea about what culture is.
Cultural fit goes beyond just getting along with potential co-workers. You must take a close look at your personal and professional goals and how they match with the company’s current operations.
What You Need to Know About Cultural Fit
Here’s how to find an employer with stand-out company culture:
Know your ideal working environment.
You already research the company before accepting any job offer. You’ve learned information about team structure, workload, and project schedules.
Rather than only looking for details on the position and company facts, dig in and discover what it’s really like working there. Ask current and former employees about their experiences. Find out if there’s a conference room where you can meet with clients and co-workers, what the break room is like, and if there’s a quiet place to de-stress if necessary.
Focus on what you need from the workplace environment to be successful. For instance, if you thrive in a busy office where there’s always a lot of activity, you’ll quickly become bored and restless working on solo projects all the time. On the other hand, if you’re used to working alone in a remote environment, you will likely be energized in a workplace that allows for personal space (office, cubicle, partition).
When you’re called in for an interview, ask detailed questions about the company culture. Employers place a high value on their cultures, and they’ll be glad to expand on what they’re doing to create a positive employee experience so you know if you’re a fit.
If there’s a chance to meet employees or tour the facility as part of the interview process, pay close attention to the physical work environment, and notice how workers interact and make use of their time in the space.
Seek out your passions.
The company’s mission and values should align with your personal values and professional goals. When values don’t align, everyone is affected. Disengagement negatively impacts the quality of your work as well as your working relationships.
Make a prioritized list of what you’re passionate about from work ethics to community involvement. Based on what’s most important to you, narrow down companies you’re interested in learning more about.
For instance, if you have an interest in humanitarian programs, start networking into companies that sponsor local clothing and food drives or take an active stance on humanities in your community. If you’re an environmentalist at heart, research companies that support clean water initiatives or host recycling drives.
You may be inspired by technology and innovation or even your own personal beliefs. No matter what drives you forward, you must find a culture that fits with your values and passions.
As you evaluate cultural fit, don’t let friendly interaction with potential co-workers distract you from seeing the total picture. Though you may feel a personal connection with the interviewer and others, this doesn’t mean the company shares your values, or that taking the job would help you achieve your career goals.
Dig to the root of the company and uncover the source of inspiration, satisfaction, and success.
Find the company’s personality.
Company leaders put a lot of time and effort into creating workplace cultures that attract employees who share their values. People are what define companies’ personalities.
This is the reason many organizations perform personality assessments during the hiring process. Rather than listing what you think they want to see, honesty is imperative in filling out this material. The process allows both you and the company to determine if your goals and values match.
Flexibility and being open to new experiences and approaches is a popular company goal. But if you prefer to do things the “tried and true” way and are resistant to change, working at a company with this value is not going to sit well for anyone.
In addition, if you pride yourself on being honest, you’ll easily become frustrated at a company that’s not fully transparent with its employees or customers. There is any number of personality factors to consider when picking the right company to work with.
The good news is, you can easily uncover a company’s personality by following them on social media and scouring their website. Being receptive to voice and tone, both in how they interact with others and how they position their employer brand, will help you understand how the company operates — both in the office and in the community.
Finding Your Perfect Fit
It’s possible to align your personal and professional goals with a company’s values and future outlook. The trick is not to confuse company culture with just getting along with potential co-workers and being overwhelmed by certain perks. Cultural fit is a total picture ideal and it starts with knowing your perfect fit.