Company Culture

How To Tell If A Company Culture is Right For You

June 25, 2019

How To Tell If A Company Culture is Right For You

You’ve been looking for a job, and you think you’ve found the right one. Your heart’s pumping, you’re excited about the possibility of a new job, and you’re getting ready for the interview. It looks you’re your job search is almost over. Congrats! We all know just how tough the job hunt can be. But have you thought about if it is the right company culture for you? Well, here is how!

What can be even more of a challenge is knowing if it’s as good as it seems. You know how it is, right? Some things seem to be too good to be true. Sometimes they are. Sometimes they aren’t. As you go into your job interview for what seems to be the perfect dream job, how do you know if it’s as accurate as it looks?

Unfortunately, it can be hard to foresee a future, but that’s where we can help you. With the following tips, you’ll be able to discover the secrets to whether or not a company culture is as fresh as they may be tempting you to think it is.

Ask For An On-site Tour

One way to get to know the company culture before you start working there is to see the company in its entirety. For example, what if you love that the company promises perks like “health perks” and you’re thinking an excellent gym room but then when you get there, you realize the health perks is a smoothie café? While the smoothie café may cool, you were hoping for a bit more. It’s a unique company culture that provides their employees with an on-site gym, but you get what we’re aiming for.

An on-site tour is going to allow you to see what’s going on in the company, so you can get a feel for the overall work ambiance, employee satisfaction, and even what your future office will look like.

What’s the office like?

As you walk through the company’s offices, is there life on the walls? Do they seem to care about creating an environment that lends itself to a place where people want to be? While this may seem minor, the effort put into a company’s environment, décor, and building says a lot about what it’s like to work there.

What do the other employees seem like as you walk through the offices? Work can be challenging at times, so you don’t necessarily need to look for smiling faces, but do take note of body language. You’ll be able to tell the moral of the team. If it’s low-luster and lacking, this may be a significant warning sign of poor company culture.

Another thing that you want to take a look at as you go through the on-site tour is what people are wearing. If they look like they’re allowed to have fun (within reason) with their work outfit, it could be a good sign of a fun work environment that doesn’t take itself too seriously.


Ask the Right Questions

You’ve probably prepared some questions that you want to ask concerning your job position. You want to be sure that you’re filling the right position, getting paid the right amount, and will be working reasonable hours, but making sure that you’re joining a company culture that will be pleasant to work at. Consider asking the following questions about its company culture.

  • What training programs are available?
  • Are they participating in community service?
  • Are there ever healthy competitions in the company?
  • Will you expect to receive feedback?
  • Will you be allowed to give feedback?
  • Do different teams work together and are it encouraged?
  • How are conflicts resolved?
  • Are there often company events where you can unwind with your team?
  • What benefits are being offered for employees, and what is the time frame?
  • Are there company initiatives with incentives?
  • Was there some big company success and was it celebrated?
  • Are there any activities to foster a strong bond on your team?
  • How long has your interviewer worked at the company?
  • How long did the previous person work at the position that you’re filling?

Okay, it isn’t THAT many questions.

This may seem like a lot of questions and while you don’t have to ask all of them, asking a few of them can help you to understand better the employer’s desire to have a happy and well-balanced team and will show them that you’re interested about working in a pleasant environment as well. Most importantly, ask the questions that matter the most to you.

If the employer cares about their company culture, they’ll happily accept and answer your questions. If not, then you’re better off working somewhere else. Sure. You’re desperate for a job, but you don’t want to end up looking for a new job five months down the line because the company culture you chose…sucks.

You don’t want to be cocky in your job interview, but being confident about what you expect and want in a job is always a good thing. So, don’t be afraid to ask questions about the environment, be careful about how you ask them.

Do Your Research

Be careful with the research that you do, as negative reviews aren’t always the truth. Sometimes they may be due to disgruntled people that have a negative outlook on life. Sometimes they are true.

Perhaps you know people who have worked there before. If you’re not sure, look at your connections on your work websites, such as LinkedIn. There, you’ll find many of your contacts’ work history. If so, ask them about their experience. When you know the person well, you’ll be able to determine if they are being honest or are simply a complainer.

Do you know your potential boss’s name? If so, do a little digging online. It may seem like snooping, but you can rest assured they’re probably doing the same thing about you. It helps to understand where your employer is coming from and how vital employee satisfaction may be to them. Don’t bring up what you’ve found out about them unless it’s something positive.

During the interview

During your interview, you’ll want to pay attention to your boss, especially if they’ll be the person above you. Get a feel of them and their style. Not everyone was born to lead, unfortunately, and you want to make sure that they’re the right kind of leader for you.

When you have done a lot of research on company culture, you may find negative information. While some of it may be true, you don’t want to go into your interview in an accusatory manner or even bring up the negative things that you’ve read about the company culture. Instead, word your questions (like the ones above) in such a way that you can find out more about these negative situations without giving away that you know about them.

The job may be worth taking, and you don’t want to lose it by merely accusing your interviewer. If you have concerns, it’s essential to get the answers that you need, but there is a diplomatic way to go about it. Pay attention to the positive things that you find out about a company’s culture as well. While the place that you want to work at may have a few issues, the good may far outweigh the bad.

Why Is It Important?

Granted, sometimes we want a job, and we want it now. Rent always needs to be paid; the bills keep coming, the kids need food, you need to keep up with your lifestyle, your bi-monthly trips need financing; whatever it is that you live for, money is required. You may want to take any job that comes your way because you want to get paid and you want to get paid now!

Before you jump into that job, here are some reasons why you should put a pause on your excitement and why paying attention to company culture is essential:

Money is necessary, but finding satisfaction in your work and team is needed as well.

It’s easy to ignore this factor due to the cash you need. But, working on getting that paycheck in a place where employees are not necessary is going to end up becoming something challenging to handle. That paycheck may soon not matter at all if you hate where you’re working. Has it ever happened to you where you took a job because the pay seemed fair, but you ended up hating waking up in the morning to go to THAT job? Maybe that’s why you’re on this job search now.

It’s nice to feel a part of something and enjoy the team that you work with.

While there may always be one or two people that provide challenges, finding a team and company culture that you like being a part of can go far in helping you to enjoy your work and going to work. Because working with a team can bring up it’s set of challenges, knowing that the company you work at cares about you is crucial in working through those difficulties. It’s nice to have fun with the people you work with and care about them on a human level as well. Finding a pleasant company culture will foster this kind of atmosphere.

It isn’t wrong to get benefits from the job that you work at.

Some companies think paying their employees is simple enough, and in some cases, it is. But, isn’t it nice when you find an employer who has initiatives, benefits, and programs that are designed to help you have a better time working there? We often look at our paycheck as the end-all, but when you find a place that realizes that happy employees are a big part of the company’s success, it’s like a whole new world of working has been opened to you.

Being the right fit for the right job that fits your skillset is worth it.

It can be hard to wait for the right company culture. We get it. Who doesn’t want that steady paycheck as soon as possible? We have vices to keep up with! Look at getting a new job as getting a “new life.” You’ll be spending a lot of time at your new job, and you want to make sure that it’s a place that you don’t mind spending time at. Even better, finding a job that allows you to shine in your area can be great for your job satisfaction. After all, if you studied for years to be well-versed in what you do, you want to put your knowledge to good use.

While you wait, spend some time laughing with us while reading The Job Search Described by Schmidt from New Girl

It’s nice to work somewhere where your talents and YOU are appreciated.

If you have a good work ethic, you probably put in a lot of work to do an excellent job at the company you work for. If you have a skill set that you’re proud of, you probably put everything into a project. While this can be personally satisfying, many would agree that receiving appreciation from your employer can be an excellent thing. Whether they show their appreciation through a simple phrase expressing their satisfaction with a job well-done or there are promotions or rewards for reaching project goals, knowing your value in a company is something we all love. A company culture with a healthy work environment is going to be good at this.

In Conclusion

While not every company is going to “Google” it by installing a bowling alley in their building, some companies offer some pretty sweet deals for their employees. If you’re someone who wants to get the hefty paycheck you’re hoping for but also enjoy every part of getting that paycheck, make sure to look at everything from the job position you’ll be filling and the company culture that you’ll be working for.

It’s essential and will make a difference in you living your best life. Working at a company that cares about its employees and where you can have a satisfying experience in your career can help you to not only live for the weekend but also be excited for the week on Sunday night.