Still Hiring for a Cultural Fit? Or a Better Culture?

Still Hiring for a Cultural Fit? Or a Better Culture?

When you interview a candidate, you’re probably looking for not only the technical skills required for any given position, but also a sense that the person sitting across from you (or on the other end of that Zoom call) shares the attitudes, values and beliefs you associate with your organization … the so-called “cultural fit.” You might even give preference to candidates who’ve been referred to you by existing employees, a leading indicator that they’ll bring those same values to the table.

On the face of it, there’s nothing wrong with that approach. The hiring and onboarding processes represent a large investment of time and resources, and it’s only fitting that you should be comfortable with a new hire beyond their technical abilities.

But there’s a potential pitfall there as well: Hiring people who all think and behave in the same ways means you’ll continue to do things in the same ways, and for most companies that’s a recipe for being left behind.

Nearly every organization has a stated goal of improving diversity, but perhaps it’s time to start thinking beyond different boxes checked on an application and consider diversity of thought. Who are the applicants whose background gives them a different worldview than your existing team, and what can they bring to the table?

New ideas. Solutions your current team might be missing. Better ways of doing things that you’re missing due to the blinders of “our culture.” The world is changing around us, and if you’re still hiring for the same culture as you were a decade ago you’re missing a huge opportunity.

Think less about a cultural fit and more about a cultural add. Probe for creativity and new ways of thinking in your interview process, and then encourage that mindset in the workplace. There are many, many candidates out there ready to challenge your ways of thinking and make your organization better in the process.

Learn how apprenticeships can add new dimensions to your company culture: Contact Franklin Apprenticeships.

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