How to Know If You Will Be a Good Cultural Fit

Taking a new job is no easy decision. The average person will spend 1842 hours a month working. Finding a culture that works for you is vital. But how do you know if you will fit the culture? According to TruPath‘s study, the camaraderie between good colleagues is a key motivator, not money. That is probably why staff turnover is 35% higher is companies with a poor culture.

Perhaps you are looking for a family feel office culture or maybe you are looking for a slick corporate office culture. Either way, it can be difficult to decode company messages and even when you do, how do you know what day-to-day life is like? We take a look at the ways you can tell if you will be a good cultural company fit.

Know What Makes You Happy

Find your motive and make sure the company’s aim is the same. More and more people want autonomy and a defined work-life balance. It is what makes your life a little bit easier and keeps you happy. Hate working till 6:30 pm? Find a company that has flexible working hours. It links in with the perks. If you find happiness in a well-stocked drinks fridge then find an office that keeps the G&Ts on ice!

Fundamentally, it comes down to knowing YOUR values and matching them with the culture. Identify what made you happy from your previous roles and take it forward in your job search. Use your values as a checklist, so if you know you enjoy working in a team environment, find a culture that focuses on collaboration and best practice sharing.

Interview the Company

It might sound obvious but it is often forgotten during an interview. Throw away your old cue card with bland questions on them and ask the hard hitting questions. A company can sell you the dream but the dream isn’t always the day-to-day reality. Ask the interviewer who you will be working with day-to-day. What is the team logistics like and would it be possible to have a chat with the team at some point? Not only does it help you decide whether you will fit but it will also demonstrate your commitment to the role.

Go For a Coffee

If you know someone who already works at the company or perhaps has worked there, try and organise a chat with them. This is not always suitable or even possible but if it is, reach out and find out whether you would be a company fit from someone you already know.

Measure the Perks

Office perks are just about everywhere nowadays. Whether it is a fruit bowl, free coffee, or something a bit more extravagant like an office gym, measure the benefits against your desires. If the team goes paintballing and plays football every week but you prefer something a bit plusher then the company might not be for you. However, don’t discount a company just because of a few perks. You might be able to influence the culture and introduce some new perks!

Do Your Homework!

Search their website, social media, and any other marketing content for clues on their culture. Use their website to decode their corporate environment; their tone of voice will help you do this. Is their content full of jargon and corporate cliche? If that isn’t your cup of tea, maybe it’s a sign that their culture doesn’t align to your cultural preferences. Alternatively, the company’s values section might apply to your values. The important thing is that the company is talking about their values. A website void of their values speaks louder than a couple of bullet points.

Read Reviews

If you don’t get much from their content, search user-generated reviews on Glassdoor, Facebook, and Google. Glassdoor, in particular, is an invaluable site to find out average salary, interview processes, and past employee reviews. However, remember that the reviews aren’t bible,  disgruntled employees are often more likely to post than happy ones.

Being a bit more specific in your cultural values when applying for roles can help you filter out the companies you don’t really fit. It will also mean you express more interest in the smaller amount of roles you do apply for.