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Hiring for Cultural Fit

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by Tammy Harvey

6 months ago

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What is cultural fit? You’ve probably heard the word thrown around numerous times, but do you know what is actually means? According to the Business Dictionary, organisational culture is defined as, ‘The values and behaviours that contribute to the unique social and psychological environment of an organisation’. So in basic terms, organisational culture includes how the company conducts business and the overall ‘feel’ of the internal organisation. It’s the way employees behave and the shared attitudes, beliefs and both written and unwritten rules and is basically the glue that holds everything together [1]. Having been in the recruitment industry for about six months now, it’s quite easy to see that hiring managers consider cultural fit to be an important component of the hiring process. You can have an outstanding job seeker ‘on paper’ with an array of work experience and qualifications and glowing references, but if they’re not a cultural fit, they just might not get the job. So definitions aside, why is cultural fit important and why should you be keeping a closer eye on it?

  1. Team harmony

Positive teamwork just isn’t going to happen if a person doesn’t get along with everyone else. There will no doubt be different personalities within a team and it is quite inevitable that some clashes will occur, but it will be difficult for members to get past it if they just don’t fit in with the culture. If your team fits in with the culture, it’s highly likely that there will be more team harmony.

  1. Performance

Incongruent belief systems and values between an employee and the organisation is practically a career death sentence. If a company’s culture goes against everything a person believes in, why would they want to perform the role well? They wouldn’t!

  1. Retention

If an employee likes their job and the company they work for and fits in with the team at the same time, they’re most likely going to want to stick around for longer! Staff retention is always a plus.

  1. Company praise

Ever heard of word-of-mouth marketing? A satisfied employee can also benefit in this department. We’ve discussed that a cultural fit makes for a happy employee, and what does a happy employee mean? Company praise – they’ll spread the word about how your organisation is such a great place to work, free of charge. There is no doubt in my mind that hiring for cultural fit is not only highly important, but perhaps even considered essential. Results don’t happen in a negative workplace environment, so it’s important that your next newcomer fits with the office culture to prevent any future ‘expectation gap’. References

  1. Business Dictionary, ‘Organisational Culture’, <http://www.businessdictionary.com/definition/organizational-culture.html>

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