Since their inception, most companies have developed values and a company culture that gives employees an impression about what they stand for, believe, and work toward. It is important for job seekers to put some effort into finding a company to work for that shares their values and is a place where they can feel like they fit in.
The first step to finding an employer that shares your values is to determine your own values and what you consider important in an employer. Do you like a businesslike atmosphere or one that is more casual? What charities do you support with your dollars and your spare time? Are you more conservative or more liberal politically? All of these things can be significant in the "feel" of a workplace that acts according to the company's values.
Discovering a Company's Values
Once you have determined your values and what you want to see in an employer's values, you can use questions during the interview process to determine whether it will measure up. Here are some questions you can ask:
- What qualities make someone a high performer here?
- When has someone not performed well, and why?
- What behaviors does the company not tolerate and why?
- Describe a situation where someone crossed the line and what happened?
- How would you describe the company's culture?
- Has the culture ever surprised you, and if so, how?
- What causes does your company support, and how do those causes align with your culture and values?
If the interviewer balks at answering any of your questions, it can be a red flag that the culture may not be a match, particularly if you value a company being upfront and transparent.
Being Open to Questions About Culture Fit
Your interviewer may have similar questions for you since many companies now consider culture fit when hiring. Answering these questions honestly is another good way to make sure you and the company are a good match for each other.
You can also tell a lot about a company's culture by looking at the context of the questions they ask in the interview. If either you or the company has reservations about cultural fit after the interview, you may need some follow-up questions to explore those reservations in greater depth.
Ultimately, it may not seem like cultural fit matters too much when you just need a job, but working in a place where you don't feel like you fit in will grow tiresome and lead you to lose interest eventually. On the other hand, finding a job where you and your colleagues feel like you are working together with a shared purpose and values will help you grow in your career and may even lead to new opportunities for advancement.
GDH can help your job search by connecting you with companies that want talent like yours. Join our talent network to explore which companies may share your values and be a good fit for you.