There has been a lot of talk about culture lately. Specifically, what is it and why it is important. Pivotal Advisors describes culture as the character and personality of your organization. It's what makes your business unique and is the sum of its values and traditions, beliefs, interactions, behaviors, and attitudes. It's usually made up of several things like the company’s core values or what we call guiding principles. Ultimately, it comes down to the behaviors that get rewarded or corrected consistently over time.
According to a survey done by Deloitte, the multinational professional service network, "94% of executives and 88% of employees believe a distinct workplace culture is important to business success." If you can't define your culture and you don't know what your core values are, or what those guiding principles might be, try answering these questions:
After answering those questions, your company’s culture should become a little more apparent and obvious.
Now, whether you fit into your company's culture is a whole different story than actually trying to define what your company's culture is. The do's and don'ts of an organization are the real things when it comes to fitting in. You can flourish in a place, or get in a spot where either you or the company decides you don't fit. You can feel when the fit isn't right.
This "wrong fit" can be apparent as early as two weeks into a new job according to Forbes. At that time, you decide it's time to leave, or your company decides it's time for you to go. Everyone experiences entering and exiting an organization. When you enter, you're excited, but when you leave, it's not usually an exhilarating time. Reasons you leave a company:
As we have seen, many things can contribute to you leaving an organization but, one of the most significant factors is the company culture. According to Jobvite, "15% of job seekers turned down a job offer because of the company's culture." As you're brought into an organization, it’s common to feel a bit like an outsider. To speed past the awkwardness of that feeling, there are several things you can do.
Remember the company chose YOU for a reason. The company wants you to succeed and are thrilled not only with the work you do, but the connections you make. So, try reaching out to groups within the workplace. Does someone go to the same gym as you? Do they want to attend a fitness class together? Does someone need another player for poker night?
Talk to your boss. Your boss should be your biggest supporter. Explain that you put yourself out there, formed some lukewarm bonds however, as you understand the company culture better, you're still not feeling confident in your ability to adapt and work well in it. Ask for suggestions. Unlike wine, this problem doesn't get better with time.
On the other hand, say you're the leader, and you brought someone new to the team. In the first few months, you notice they aren't adapting well to the company culture. Here are a few tactics to help acclimate the new person:
As a company, both parties should want to experience a cultural fit, which should come out in the hiring process. According to HAYS Recruiting Experts Worldwide, "47% of active job seekers cite company culture as their driving reason for looking for work." As the hiring manager, you'll want to listen for certain cultural keywords or phrases that align well with the company. You can also take the candidate out and see how they handle being in an informal situation, or see how they flow in the office with some shadowing. Lastly, you can also give them a selection assessment. There are several ways to make sure both the company and the new person are a fit.
A well-defined culture allows a company to exercise its identity. Once a company establishes its identity, it helps leaders and employees to be successful. When the company culture is a good fit for leadership and employees, they are likely to be happier, loyal and more productive resulting in increased company performance, which is a win-win for all.