4 Big Factors When Interviewing for Cultural Fit

4 Big Factors When Interviewing for Cultural Fit
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Interviewing for Cultural Fit
Granted, you DO NOT want all of your employees to be exactly alike.  But, because your strategies must go through your people and your culture to get executed successfully, you DO want your workforce to mesh together well and to pull enthusiastically and with commitment in the same direction in a way that makes sense.

We know from our organizational culture assessment data that cultural misfits aren’t just difficult; they are also a detriment to the bottom line in terms of lost productivity and impaired morale.  That means everyone should understand and pay attention to cultural factors when interviewing for cultural fit.

Behavioral Interviewing Increases Your Chances for Success
Building an aligned and high performing company takes planning from the beginning. And one of the best ways to select talented employees who will fit the high performance culture you want to build is to follow behavior-based interviewing best practices.

Motivation Matters
New hire success does not just depend on a worker’s experience and ability but also their motivation. You need to learn how interested the candidate is in doing the work that the job requires and how likely they are to work well with others within your unique organizational culture.

Four Factors When Interviewing for Cultural Fit
While most people think about just cultural hiring for a match in terms of corporate values and strategic vision, we find that interviewers do not do enough to assess a candidate’s ability to mesh with the way people think, work, and behave.  Here are four underestimated factors to uncover when interviewing for cultural fit that will help to better predict hiring success:

  1. Speed
    Will the candidate do well at the pace your company operates? We find pace varies greatly from company to company and industry to industry.
  2. Style
    Are they more used to an entrepreneurial environment or a more established, structured one? It is very different to work at IBM than it is to work at Zappos.
  3. Autonomy and Collaboration
    Do they work better with frequent supervision or more independently? Do they collaborate and work well with teams playing various roles or are they more of a lone wolf?
  4. Adaptability
    How flexible are they in different situations and circumstances? Will they be able to adapt to changing conditions and managerial styles?

What If There Is Not a Cultural Fit?
In general, if candidates are not a good fit for your company culture, they’re not a good fit for the company as a whole. Poor cultural fits eventually cause problems.  Some become toxic.  For candidates who are not a cultural fit, you can either pass on them and wait for a candidate who is more aligned with your company culture or decide that they may add something useful to your culture — especially if they are more aligned with your aspired workplace culture.

The Bottom Line
We define culture as how things get done in a company; each and every corporate culture is different.  And people can be high performers in one culture and low performers in another.  Even though cultural fit is just one behavioral interviewing data point of many, do not underestimate the above four cultural factors when interviewing for cultural fit.

To learn more about key factors when interviewing for cultural fit, download the 3 Levels that Are Necessary to Get Right for a High Performing Culture

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