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In the workforce today, many people say, “we want to have a good culture.” Culture is the way people think and act in an organization. It impacts employee productivity, engagement, and hiring.

In fact, many employees consider company culture an important factor when looking for a new job. One survey found that 46% of job seekers said culture was one of the deciding factors in choosing to apply for a job. 

Hiring candidates who embody your culture is in the best interest of organizations. Employees that understand and live by their company values and mission will be more engaged, motivated, and productive.

In this article, we discuss how organizations can hire the best candidates for their company culture. 

How to hire candidates who embody your culture

1. Define your company values and live by them

Weekly happy hours, company retreats, casual Wednesdays – these make a fun workplace but don’t define your company culture. A company culture is made up of a set of values or competencies that an organization must produce. It includes how you want your employees to behave and make decisions. 

For example, if an organization claims that openness and transparency are part of their company culture, but employees feel uncomfortable sharing their opinions during team meetings, the experience they are having is not aligned with the culture that is being portrayed. 

Outlining company values without encouraging and enforcing these values is simply not enough. Integrating company values into your performance management process can be a great way to showcase these values. This is how great company cultures are built and sustained over time. 

2. Outline your company values and describe your company culture in job descriptions

Company values should be outlined in job postings. Moreover, the job posting can describe the type of employee that would thrive in the role and company and basic expectations of skills and behaviors.

Company description is becoming increasingly important – 23% of candidates say that a company description is the most important part of a job description. For organizations, placing these details in the job description can help narrow down applicants with the right mindset that is aligned with the company.

Consider this excerpt from a job description: “We value employees that are ready to test the limits and step out of their comfort zone. We are big fans of constructive feedback to help push employees’ creative bounds.” This provides a candidate with a good description of what to expect if they are hired (i.e., constructive feedback and being pushed outside of their comfort zone).

3. Evaluate culture fit during interviews 

Interviews act as another avenue to showcase company culture. More importantly, it is a method to evaluate if the candidate is right for your culture. This is a very important step for candidates who can turn down offers (in fact, 15% of candidates turn down offers due to a lack of company culture).

Evaluating for culture fit can be done through a series of questions. Below are some questions we recommend if you are looking to hire for culture fit. 

  • What motivates you to succeed in the workplace? 
  • Do you perform better working alone or in a team?
  • How would your past peers describe your work style?
  • Can you describe what manager style works best for motivating you?
  • What type of work culture do you thrive in?
  • What do you consider when making a business decision? 

At the end of the day, people are your business. When organizations define their company culture and hire people that embody company values, it helps accelerate the ability to shift, to be agile, and to deliver results.  

This post was written by Riley Steinbach from Pavestep, a performance management solution. 

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