Why You Need to Get Your Feet Wet

feet splashing in puddle


Are you thinking: new year, new job? I know it’s a great market to find new opportunities, but wait—don’t rush it. Before you “say yes,” do your research to be sure it’s the right culture fit.


Job seekers are saying company culture is nearly as important as pay when accepting an offer, rising far above other factors—location, day-to-day work, flexibility, industry, job title, benefits (TopResume 2019).


While you’re interviewing, I’m sure you’re told the company culture is right for you—why worry? Remember, they want you to take this job—of course that’s what they say! Sure, it may be a match made in heaven, but you won’t know if your only opinion is the one they’re telling you to have.


It’s important to note that about 30% of new hires who’ve taken a new job failed to figure out the company culture and left soon after (Crist/Kolder Associates 2020).


So, how do you make sure it’s a good fit?


  • Know yourself. Make a list of your “must-haves” for your next organization. Think about the other companies you’ve worked for. What about the culture did you like? More importantly, what DIDN’T you like?


  • Do your homework. Scan folks who’ve worked there, and reach out to learn more about their experience at the company. Check out the company’s Glassdoor (NOT just the 5 star reviews). Stalk the organization’s social media. Overall, get a feel for what’s under the lid—not just what they’re showing you on the outside.


  • Pay close attention. When you’re on-site for an interview, walk the halls & notice how people interact. Pick up on social norms & the vibe of the workplace. Do people smile at you? Avoid eye contact? Trust your gut and look for clues. Ask yourself, how would I feel about working with these people?


  • Grill your recruiter. If you’ve partnered with a search firm, your recruiter should know if this organization is a true fit for you. Regardless, be vigilant. Ask questions to uncover what it’s really like.
    • Why is the role open? Why have past individuals left the role/department?
    • What are the biggest challenges facing this department? The organization?


  • Try before you buy. If you are not currently employed, ask your recruiter if the company might be open to a contract arrangement before you sign an offer letter. This is a way for you to experience the job & company culture for yourself, and both parties can see if it will be the right fit. Think of it as dating before your wedding day. If you are working and unsure, consider taking a vacation day to shadow the team you’d be joining.


The bottom line: finding the right company culture can be hard, especially when a company knows how to woo you. However, there ARE ways to determine fantasy vs. reality. Remember: culture is about values. You will be happiest where you share a value system with an employer!


Our suggestion? Find a recruiter or search firm that takes the time to get to KNOW you, YOUR goals, and that really cares about finding a culture fit for YOU.


Questions? Call us!


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