It’s important to match your skills, strengths, interest, and personality to a company’s culture, values and environment. No doubt, that the company is going to feel you out for culture fit during the interview process. How do you learn about the environment and culture of a company that you’ve never worked at before? Getting this one wrong could lead you to regret the decision to join the group in the first place. Let’s get it right. 

Understand the company’s purpose and philosophy

You should research any company that you are interested in to understand their purpose and philosophy. It’s the whys and hows of its existence. Here are a few of the ways that you can check in on this. 

  • Check out the company’s website. What are they promoting and proud of? What is their history? Do they have info on the specific location that you are looking for? You can find much of this info on the about page of their website. 
  • Look into the CEO. Have they been there awhile? You can look at sites like Glassdoor to see their approval rating among the employees. You can also discover if the employees would recommend the company to others.  I like to check to see the trend in the comments. Have they jumped up or taken a nosedive in the year? Why?
  • Check the organization’s social media feeds to see what they are highlighting. It’s a signal of what is important to them. 
  •  If you have an in-person interview, get there early and observe how people interact with others. Are they modeling the type of environment that you like?
  • Interview everyone that interviews you about their thoughts on the company. (They usually love this!) Ask them to describe the company. What is their favorite thing about working there? What is one thing that they would change? What does success look like there?

Some items that describe fit are universal


Some things are just universal and are nearly always looked for in a new job. Here are some of the most common to look into and discover how important they are to the organization you are looking at. 

  • Trust
  • Employee engagement or their level of care
  • Promotability
  • Their culture: formal or informal 
  • Leadership
  • Communication to its employees
  • Ownership of role and responsibility 
  • Delegation or micromanagement

Identify your ideal leader


Hopefully, you have had at least one great boss. It’s ok if you’ve had a bunch of bad ones too. Use the bad ones to figure out what you don’t want in a leader! Write out all those qualities and honestly ask the hiring leader how they see themselves as a leader and what their leadership style is. If it’s a match, that’s just further confirmation that you are in the right place. If it’s not a match, it’s an indicator that you likely will be frustrated in the role. 

Now, you know everything you need to about yourself, you have your industries narrowed down and your companies picked out. Next time we will formulate the plan to get your job. 

Make a better tomorrow. 
-ZH