When adding new staff to your company, it is like shopping for a pair of new shoes. There are unlimited styles, colors, sizes etc. What it all boils down to is that you have to try on several before you find the perfect fit. Just like the perfect shoe, when you need to hire a new person for your organization, you have to interview many candidates to find the “right fit”

What is the right fit? Well that depends on many things and every company is unique. What is unique about your firm and what is the formula that determines your “right fit”. Over the years and after interviewing countless companies and candidates, we learn from each client what makes them unique. Sometimes the client has no sense of comparison to what other companies offer and why a candidate would choose them?

In my 30+ years as the owner of my own company, and after interviewing countless clients and candidates, we understand uniqueness. We learn about the character of your organization.

I always ask my clients “Why should someone want to work here?” I always find it interesting and quite informative.

Here are some of their answers!

  • We have flexible working hours

  • We are like a family and everyone gets together outside of work

  • Our benefit package is far and above everyone else’s

  • We have no turnover

  • We have state of the art equipment

  • We have flex time in the summer

  • We allow our employees to work from home

In a time when there are a lot of candidates and positions to fill, you want the best and brightest candidates to choose your firm. Know what your match is and know what your cultural environment is too.

A recent study by Lauren Rivera, a management professor at Northwestern’s Kellogg School of Management, found that hiring managers evaluate candidates based on cultural fit over qualifications. Employers want to hire those who want to “hang out” with them rather than strictly focusing on the person’s capabilities for getting the job done. Rivera interviewed 120 employers at elite U.S. investment banks, law firms and consulting firms, and more than half ranked “cultural fit” as the most important factor in an interview. Cultural fit includes having a similar background, interests and self-presentation to the hiring manager. She noted that employers hire in a manor closely aligned with choosing friends or romantic partners.

In addition to Rivera’s research, Glassdoor collected 285,000 common interview questions that hiring managers ask. The top four questions were:

What’s your favorite movie?,” “What’s your favorite website?,” “What’s the last book you read for fun?,” and “What makes you uncomfortable?” As you can see, all of these relate to cultural fit and aren’t asking if the applicant can actually do the job and perform at a high level. This is part of the reason why college alumni networks are extremely important. College alumni like hiring other college alumni because they took the same courses, have similar experiences and come from similar backgrounds. Employees want to work with other people like themselves, naturally.

You cannot train people on cultural fit. So if you want to attract and retain the right people — Know your cultural fit.

One Response to “Company Culture: The Character of Your Organization”

  1. Deborah Bukovy says:

    I found this blog most interesting and I agree that finding a cultural fit is an important part of the hiring process. Thanks for sharing.

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