Employers want to hire enthusiastic team members who are capable, productive, and loyal. And while an increasing number of businesses are beginning to see the value in hiring for culture, many of them still aren’t quite sure how to do it.
If you fall into this category, you’re not alone. Here are five tips to get you on your way toward building a company with great culture— and a team to match.
1. Identify it
You can’t hire for cultural fit if you haven’t figured out what it is.
Questions to ask yourself and your team:
- What is our purpose?
- What things do we value?
- How will those values guide our actions, behaviors, and decisions?
- What are our priorities?
- How do we support our employees? Our community?
- How does our work make a difference in the world?
What is your true organizational purpose? Your driving force? That thing that gets you out of bed in the morning and makes you feel great about what you do?
Define it. Describe it. And write it down.
2. Communicate it
Defining your vision is key to building a strong culture, but it won’t do you any good if no one knows about it.
Make sure your company values and vision are communicated throughout the organization, from top to bottom, clearly and often. These things need to be constantly on display, completely unavoidable, and part of the organizational DNA. This includes your website, marketing, job descriptions, and hiring practices.
People want to work for companies they can get excited about. They want to learn, grow, and perform in organizations that reflect their own values and beliefs back to them. Today’s job seekers are looking for that perfect fit. When they find it, they will excel. They will go above and beyond. And they will stay.
3. Keep it consistent
Painting a pretty cultural picture that isn’t a daily reality may fool people initially, but it won’t last long. If there are discrepancies between your cultural story and your cultural experience, people are going to catch on quickly. Not only will you lose your credibility, you’ll lose your best business asset— your hardworking employees.
If your organization values a high-risk, high-reward atmosphere, that’s okay. Just make sure that’s what coming through in your job listings, applications, and the career section of your website. If you’re a high intensity environment marketing yourself as a low-key, chill place to work, you’ll be attracting all the wrong kinds of candidates. And setting everyone up for failure.
4. Recruit for it
How do you determine what characteristics you’re looking for when hiring? Do some testing.
Gather your best performers and most enthusiastic employees and ask them a few key questions. What do they think makes them a good fit for the team? What do they love most about working at your company? Why do they continue to stay?
Brainstorm potential interview questions based on these responses and then have your current stars answer them honestly. Look for patterns that emerge and characteristics or qualities that consistently rise to the top. These are the things you’ll want to look for in your future hires.
To create a recruiting process that takes cultural fit into account from the get-go, develop an ideal candidate profile.
Pulling from your in-house research, create the story of who you want on your team. What kind of person are you looking for? Which traits are most desirable? Once you know who you’re targeting, you can start thinking about the best way to look for them.
Where are you most likely to find candidates that match this description? What social channels are they on? Where would they go to look for new opportunities? Sometimes, they’re already working for you.
Part of building great culture includes supporting career development and promoting from within. You may also want to consider asking your staff for referrals. Because they are already familiar with your culture, they’re more likely to recommend someone who will be a good fit.
5. Put it into action
If you’ve been recruiting strictly for skill set, hiring for cultural fit may seem a little intimidating. But doing so could take your staffing, and your team, to the next level.
Taking the time to determine what drives your company culture will help you find employees who not only can do the job, but who are also excited to work at your organization. Provide them with an experience that matches their expectations and plenty of career development options, and they’ll be more than happy to keep contributing to the team they love.
And that’s a definite cultural win.
Running into challenges with employee engagement, turnover, and retention? At Raffa, we’ve got ideas to help you address these issues and more. Get in touch to find out what working with a true employee benefits consultant feels like.
Photo by destinacigdem