Author: Tara Smylie
Corporate culture hasn’t always been at the forefront of hiring processes. Nowadays, though, it can play a huge role. That’s right: corporate culture is all the rage in today’s recruiting world – and for good reason.
Employees are more than their skillset, and companies are more than a list of random requirements. Individuals and groups all have their own unique personalities, and a good match on that level can work wonders for employee satisfaction and productivity.
Exploring and defining your company culture will let you screen for a good cultural fit among job-seekers. Here we’ll outline what corporate culture really is – and how to hire candidates who fit into yours.
The Dimensions of Corporate Culture
What do we mean by “corporate culture”? It’s one part belief, and one part behavior. It’s both what a company stands for, and the decisions made about how it operates. Regardless of the specifics, one thing is consistent across all companies: corporate culture promotes employee happiness, which is great for business.
The culture you foster will depend on both the needs and the limitations of your business. For example, start-ups are known for corporate cultures that stack up as more informal, but less laid-back, than what you’d find at your average corporation. This is a natural by-product of being both small in size and extra-determined in mindset.
According to Investopedia, there are four different styles of corporate culture. Naturally, most work environments will incorporate elements of all four, and outside influences as well – but if you’d like a starting point, figure out which of these styles appeals to you the most:
- Adhocracy culture: this cultural style values innovation and risk-taking above all else, and puts less emphasis on perfect organization or adherence to a rulebook.
- Clan culture: within this framework, collaboration is paramount. Employees are encouraged to see themselves as part of a team, and actively value the work of every member.
- Hierarchy culture: though it’s less up-and-coming, there is a time and place for this more traditional style of company organization. A large company with a complex structure will likely have to adopt at least some aspects of a hierarchical culture to function smoothly.
- Market culture: to some extent all corporate cultures revolve around the marketplace. That said, the “market culture” we’re referring to is one that openly and aggressively pursues market targets, rather than focusing on more indirectly profitable projects.
Lay Out your Culture Cards Early
When screening for cultural fit, honesty really is the best policy. You can still frame your company in a positive light, but be open about the aspects of your corporate style that might rub some people the wrong way. Are you an ultra-collaborative, open-concept-style workplace? Maybe you encourage casual dress and even more casual deadlines. Whatever it is, let your interviewees know! This will encourage them, in turn, to open up about some of their own quirks. It’s not about finding the objective “best”, but rather the “best fit” for your company.
Screen for Flexibility
When assessing cultural fit, factor in the possibility that a candidate might naturally thrive in a certain kind of workplace – but not know it yet. How to investigate? Make sure your corporate culture is on display at every stage of the interview process. If they seem game for it, if a little shy at first, chances are they’d quickly feel at home at your company. But if they seem resistant or indifferent, it may be time to consider someone else.
A Critical Success Factor
It’s one of the “softer” qualities employers screen for, and can be overlooked for that reason. But cultural fit is essential – an employee whose personality, values and/or habits don’t align with those of their workplace will feel less satisfied in their job, and may struggle to perform as a result. On the other hand, a good cultural fit will feel inspired to contribute their best work.
Sci.bio recruiters understand how important cultural fit is to the success of a new employee. Check out our recruitment services if you’d like to learn more about what we offer.