Culture Fit – these buzz words float across all organizations and you often hear, “our company culture is so important to us”, to “we have to hire for culture fit above everything else”, to “I’m not even sure what our culture is.”
But what does culture fit really mean, and as a company should you really hire for culture fit?
An organization’s culture is made up of the core values, beliefs and behavior by a group of people. It often makes a statement on WHO the people are behind the company regardless if you are a product and/or service-based business.
So why do companies put such an emphasis on culture and what does this mean for your ability to attract talent? Also, what does this mean for your existing employees?
The truth is the culture of a company sets the tone of what I call the HEART of the company. Your people are the ones behind it – from your leadership team to the very people doing the day to day operations and execution of whatever your business is (product or service based). They are the ones that collectively, shape it. They embody and reflect the values and beliefs of your company (or they should). With that said, whatever ‘culture’ you create – make sure it’s one people want to be a part of.
Being in recruiting, I often get asked the question by candidates on the regular around, “can you tell me more about what the culture is like”? Ultimately, people want to align themselves with a company that shares similar values and work ethic as their own.
But what happens when people don’t want to work for your company BECAUSE of your culture? You have the best brand/product/service, etc. and yet still can’t seem to attract the right talent. As an employer, do you just assume they’re not the right culture fit, or do you assess and evaluate if there’s something about your culture that needs to be re-evaluated?
There are a few things I like to consider when I think about culture. Maybe this might help you think about your own company culture. Especially if you’re in the middle of shifting what that looks like and embarking on a cultural change, which can often be taxing and a challenge in and of itself. Change is important, it’s inevitable and can be well worth it with the right intentions.
• PEOPLE – probably one of the most important aspects to consider. WHO are the people that will thrive the best in your organization? What makes up the characters, backgrounds, work ethics, etc. Do they align with your company values?
• Service – do what you do with the intention that it can serve and help someone other than yourself. Do you have a strong philanthropic arm to your business? Do you support volunteer work? Do you give back to your local community? This should be part of every business out there. A mindset, a belief and a way of doing business with the intention of giving back in some way. Yes, you need to run a business and make money, but it shouldn’t overrule your people or be more important than being of service to others.
• Vision – Define your company’s mission and have a clear, strategic direction and vision. Where is the company going? What do you want the future to look like?
• Values – what are these? Are they clearly defined? Remember, whatever values you list as important to your company, you have a responsibility to reflect them and embody them every day. This starts with your executive leadership team.
• Place/Location – where does the HEART of your organization live? Is it in the hustle and bustle of the city? Are you accessible? Or are you set up virtually? Something to think about.
These are just a few aspects of what I think makes up a company culture and sets the tone of a strong one to say the least.
When you’re thinking about evaluating your own as an employer, make sure it’s clearly defined and it’s one where people stay because of it.
I’d love to hear from you!
What kind of culture’s have you been a part of in your career? What about that company culture resonated with you the most?
If you could change one thing about your current company culture, what would that be and why?
Thanks as always for your time!
With so much appreciation,