The big CC. No, I’m not talking about Comedy Central or Color Correcting cream. It’s what startups near and far, tiny and Google-esque, are spending time and resources into developing. It’s company culture.
Whether it’s through impromptu happy hours, or a series of in-depth Skype interviews, companies are trying to discover whether you are a good fit for their specific culture. But you have your own ambitions, goals, and ideal work environment too, right?
So how can you find out if the culture is a good fit for your own criteria? It’s easy to ignore what you want and think, “Well, hey, I just want a job — any job.” But if you end up unhappy, you’ll have to start your search all over again.
To avoid ending up at square one, you need to find out how to gauge and assess a company’s culture before you sign the contract. How? Just ask these company culture interview questions during your next job interview.
Okay, you don’t have to ask this straight-up, but you can allude to it through questions like, “How long have you worked here?” If there is high turnover, it’s likely that there are problems with their culture. Office drama between colleagues, a lack of voice, bad management, etc. can all contribute to making people leave the company quickly. And a place where people are constantly trying to exit is not one you want to enter.
With this question, you can find out the level of input you’d be able to make depending on your level or rank within the company. Can you, as a marketer, sit in on a product meeting? Can you provide input on marketing issues?
One quick way to discover how collaborative an environment is, is to see how your interviewer answer the “ideas” question. And it’s a much more pointed way to learn the truth than by asking “How team oriented are you?”
If growth and new opportunities are what you’re after, make sure you don’t end up at a dead-end job. If you want the chance to move up and take on new responsibilities, this is your chance to ensure you’re not looking for yet another new job a year down the road.
Are metrics focused on time spent in the office or results achieved? This could be a tough one to answer, but could give you insight into the degree of freedom offered as well as the challenges and responsibilities available.
A quick search before the interview should give you all the clues you need to build personalized company culture interview questions.
This is your chance to show them that you’ve invested the time to really get to know them, and that you’re excited to learn more! What does it mean when they say they “value change”? What’s their motivation behind team outings?
At the end of the day, it’s about getting to know yourself and what you want out of a job. What will make you happy even after the honeymoon phase is over? If you’re able to answer that, then you’re already halfway there to finding a company that’s the right culture match for you!