Culture (noun): In a social setting, culture is an unseen, intangible set of ideals, languages, communication and practices that people hold in common.
A company’s identity is built around its staff and cultivating that identity. The hiring process is, of course, about finding someone who can do the job required. However, it’s also about finding that person who can fit into the vision that you have for your company. This vision, this identity… a key element of both of these, and let’s face it – what shapes both of these – is your culture, your company culture. Let’s take a little peek at what this is. Then, discover how to figure it out (or identify it if you haven’t already), and how you can make that culture large and in charge!
Know who you are and what your company is about.
This is one of those statements that everyone glances at and immediately brushes aside thinking, “but I already know what my company does”. Let me stop you right there. It’s important to note that this isn’t about what industry you’re in because believe it or not, that’s pretty much irrelevant. Rather, this is about HOW you work. HOW you communicate with your co-workers and with the outside world. For example…
Are you the kind of boss or manager who is front and centre or a little more behind the scenes? Do you have your days scheduled to the brim, everyone knowing what lies ahead and when with a structured code of communication? Or are you more of the open-door policy type? It’s not a case that one approach is better than the other, rather it comes down to whatever works best for you and then to…
Define it. Live it. Embody it in actions and words.
In meetings, in interviews, in client calls – this is where your company culture will present itself with no holds barred. On that first call with a potential new staff member, you want to tell them all the reasons your company is the one for them. These reasons should be the same reasons why you love your company.
It may be that you love your company for the endless meme exchange on a Monday morning and for organising a random doughnut delivery on Thursday just because it brings a smile to people’s faces. Or it may be how you stick together to solve problems and come up great new ideas. How you rally behind each other in the tough moments, when work has piled up or, you know, when someone just needs a little help. This is living your company culture and there’s no hiding behind your words if your actions don’t reflect them. Know who you are and stand up in it.
Communicate. Be flexible. Discuss perks. And? …discuss things beyond work too.
So, when interviewing a potential new team member, check in with yourself and see do these little elements (or whatever your equivalent elements are) exist in the person in front of you. If they are professionally everything needed on paper but these core details are missing, are they the right fit? Or do you take a chance on the person with less experience but who would clearly hold your culture in the palm of their hand?
I think you know my answer but let’s be straight here. You can give a person experience in their job and help them advance professionally but their outlook and personality are theirs alone. And there is absolutely nothing wrong with that. There are so many types of potential, and some people need the right environment to come into bloom, and I think you can clue into this when you meet someone. In interviews, remember to relate to people as people and take a genuine interest in them. How they respond will be a real tell-tale sign of whether they’re the right candidate because…
If you show interest in someone, they’ll be interested in you too.
Be warm, be receptive. Most of the time, we speak to our co-workers 5 out of 7 days of the week. That’s a lot of time together! This is why establishing and recognising your culture is important and why it’s such a key factor in the hiring process. Make space for some general light conversation; perhaps ask how their weekend was and actually listen to their answers. Normalise making time for personal back and forth to get a holistic feeling for the person.
Whoever you choose to hire is going to become a part of your company’s fabric for a significant time to come. That’s the intention anyway, right? You don’t want to repeatedly be hiring because people aren’t fitting in well. You want to be repeatedly hiring because your company is succeeding, and healthy, and growing so much that you need more hands on deck. So do it and do it right. Ultimately, you’re doing yourself and your company a big favour.
So, to sum this all up...
Put out what you want to receive back. If your online content and social media content are honest depictions of how you are in the workplace, you’ll attract similar people. They’ll see your content online and think, “yeah… THAT’S where I want to work!” By doing that, you’re already setting the tone for the type of people who come to interviews. Furthermore, those you do hire feel seen and included and happy, and that sounds like a win-win for everyone!
Would you like to work in Webbiz?
We have numerous positions available at present and would love to hear from you! Why not pop on over to our Careers page and take a look, or get in touch with us and we’ll start the conversation there. Together we could grow our digital agency even further and make some incredible work!