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  • Writer's pictureGreg LaMontagna

The Importance of Culture Fit in the Workplace

Updated: May 13

When hiring a new candidate, it can be routine to turn the attention entirely to the candidate’s experience, their previous work history, and their knowledge of the industry. While it is important to remain laser-focused on the skills and experience the candidate brings, there is another qualifier that will set up an organization for even more success, and that is finding the right cultural fit.

Finding a candidate that shares in the goals, values, and environment of an organization can have a profound impact on the success of the business, and the candidate’s future within that company. The right cultural fit in the workplace can drive an increase in employee engagement and productivity, resulting in happier employees who feel invested in the work they are doing and better connected to their coworkers.

In the world of pharma advertising and medical communications, it is natural to focus on candidates that have the experience and expertise for the position because the highly technical positions require a certain skill set that not every candidate possesses. It is crucial not to overlook the cultural aspect of the candidate, making sure that they will fit within the team so they can add value for the long-term success of the agency. Inversely, candidates need to identify if an organization is a fit for them. If an interview or environment doesn’t feel right, it’s probably not a great fit. Let’s look at it from each angle, exploring why cultural fit is important for both employers and employees.

Cultural Fit For Employer

Recruiting for cultural fit is essential in the hiring stage of your organization. While experience is important, cultural fit is often a stronger indicator of success. An employee can always learn new skills, but the right culture cannot be taught. It’s important to be clear in the mission of your company to define the employees you are seeking. If you need extroverted individuals for your sales team, it would be detrimental to hire someone who is quiet and more reserved, even if they do come with sales experience.

If you hire someone who is right for the job, but not your company, it could cost you more money in the long run. The employee may leave after a short period, meaning that you need to invest time and money into the recruiting process once again to hire their replacement. The lost productivity and time it takes to hire and onboard a new employee could cost your business a hefty sum of money.

To avoid this situation, it’s critical that you take the time in the interview process to understand what the candidate values in an employer; what are their personal goals, and what environment is suitable for them. It might add some time to your hiring process, but if you find a candidate that is happy and contributing to the team, it is beneficial to your company in the long-term.

It is of the utmost importance that you make your company culture and mission front and center in everything you do. Your website and social media accounts should drive these values and goals that define who you are as a company. A potential candidate should be able to quickly deduce what the company stands for so they can decide if their personal goals align with yours.

Cultural fit is one of the best indicators of employee satisfaction and retainment. An established mission and vision for your organization will keep employees focused and engaged on the shared goals. If you don’t have a list of your core values, you can ask longtime employees to help you define them. Ensuring your goals are authentic will give you a measuring stick on how to evaluate potential employees.

Cultural Fit For Employee

As the job seeker, it’s equally important to evaluate the culture of the company and the position you are considering. Don’t be quick to accept any job offer that comes your way. You need to carefully consider the culture of the organization to determine if you will be successful there. You have the experience to perform the job, or you wouldn’t have an offer, but if you don’t agree with the mission and goals of the organization, you will not be engaged and happy.

You’ll want to be clear and uncompromising on what you are looking for culturally. If you value relationships with your coworkers, you’ll want to work for a company that fosters collaboration and values regular social events for employees. Take a look at their social media accounts, are the employees part of a sand volleyball team or do they post photos of the teams doing fun things around the office? If so, this is probably a cultural fit for you. Conversely, if you visit the office and notice everyone stays in his or her office and it’s a quiet and reserved environment, this might not be a place where you can thrive.

When you feel happy and engaged as a stakeholder in the organization, you will perform better and have growth opportunities that will allow you to develop within the company. Working towards shared goals and success is a very gratifying process, and you can be a part of a company’s growth. Ask the tough questions in the interview process to help you recognize the best fit for your personality.

Never Compromise on Cultural Fit

A cultural fit in the workplace is something neither party should compromise. When a company hires an individual who is a great culture fit, that employee will believe in the company’s mission, endorse its philosophy, and will vigorously execute their job responsibilities to help the company move towards achieving the collective goals. In turn, the employee will feel more connected to the company, increasing their job satisfaction and encouraging them to continue pushing the boundaries and working harder.

Highly engaged employees can make all the difference — they will love coming into work each day and push each other to work harder towards achieving the common goal.

Agency life can be hectic and stressful at times, especially when team members are under tight deadlines. If you are struggling to find candidates with the right cultural fit for your pharma advertising agency, or are an employee searching for the right workplace, GLE Creative Talent can help you pinpoint the perfect match for you.

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