Sometimes during the hiring process, those doing the interviewing focus almost exclusively on a candidate’s knowledge, skills and experience. These are all important, naturally. But they ignore another very important aspect of making a good hire – how well the candidate will fit in with the company’s culture.

This is a little bit more difficult to determine than the other qualifications. If you begin by describing the culture of your place and then ask the applicant if he or she will fit in, you are more than likely to get a positive answer. For that reason, business consultant Jim Roddy suggests waiting until the end of the interview to describe corporate culture, and instead, asking other kinds of questions to assess a candidate’s fit, questions that probe how the candidate fit into other cultures.

One such question would be to quiz the candidate about the worst company culture in which he ever worked. From this question you can get a sense of how difficult previous work environments were for the person, and how he would react to the work environment in your company.

And, Roddy says, you shouldn’t always accept a person’s answer at face value, because cultural fit depends on the person’s attitude and perception. You would need to probe the person’s answers. A candidate, for example, might complain about a company’s culture simply because the business required the person to file periodic reports and meet deadlines – hardly what you would consider a toxic environment.

You can also ask how the candidate was able to cope with a less than optimum culture. This helps to give you some idea of their character and personality, Roddy says. You will be able to find out if he has the fortitude to push his way through difficult circumstances, or if he soon fled. You will be able to find out how the candidate reacted to the environment, whether he maintained an optimistic outlook, or became negative. And you will be able to find out how he looks at the situation now, whether he is bitter about it, or has a more mature attitude and looks at it as a learning experience.

Then, near the end of the interview process, you should detail your company culture with the candidate, and even give him something in writing about it, so that he understands it and its importance.

Looking for employees who are perfect fit for your NYC-area firm? Then contact the recruiters at Winston Resources. We will ascertain the type of people who thrive in your own firm’s culture and work hard to find people who will fit in well. Contact us today.

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