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Cultivating the Right Team: Navigating Culture Fit Interview Questions for Hiring Success

by Lauren Fenech

“We really want to make sure this person is a good culture fit,” says every hiring manager ever. And trust me, we get it! Businesses have personalities, just like people do. Making sure that an employer is hiring individuals who match the company’s values, goals, and the business’s “personality” is crucial for longevity and peace in the workplace. In this blog, we will discuss culture fits, culture adds, and cultures destroyers – what they are, how to catch them, and how to navigate them. 

What is a culture fit?

There are many ways we can describe this individual. Firstly, this person has values, beliefs, behaviors, and attitudes that align with the business. A company’s culture includes factors like company goals, workplace environment, employee expectations, and management styles. Employees who fit well with their company culture are more likely to remain with that organization for a longer time. Being transparent with candidates and discussing company culture in the interview process is important, so that the candidate can also decide if they align with the company, as well. The end goal is to identify and hire the best candidates who match the organization’s core values. 

What is a culture add?

Better than hiring a culture fit, an employer can hire a “culture add”, someone who fuels the culture in a positive way. This person can provide a safe space to express issues, help a team set goals, and make work more enjoyable. This person also adds diversity to the team’s culture – hiring someone who brings something new to the table instead of perfectly matching the current team. This person adds variety into a team without rocking the boat of the current cohesive culture. 

What is a culture destroyer?

What every manager wants to stay away from is a “culture destroyer”. Have you ever had a work environment that was working in harmony until it wasn’t? This individual could be a leader, an associate, or someone who has been with the company for a long time. Regardless, recognizing there is a problem is the first step; coming up with a plan is the next. This can be difficult, but having a conversation with the “culture destroyer” is vital. It’s detrimental to the business’s success that an organization works cohesively. We are all humans, and we all go through things in life that can affect work. After a conversation with this individual to see if there’s anything that can be done to change the attitude and behaviors, it’s essentially a waiting game to see if they can button it up. The harsh reality is that if this person isn’t adding to the cohesiveness of the team and organization, letting them go will be best in the long run. 

As you’re going through your interview process, here are some questions you can ask to see how your candidate will affect your culture.

Culture Fit Interview Questions

  1. How would you describe our company culture based on your research and understanding?
  1. Can you share an example of a time when you had to adapt to a new work environment or company culture? How did you handle it?
  1. What values are important to you in a work environment? How do they align with our company’s values?
  1. How do you typically approach collaboration and teamwork? Can you give an example of a successful collaboration experience?
  1. Can you describe a situation when you disagreed with a team member or supervisor? How did you handle the disagreement while maintaining a positive working relationship?
  1. Tell us about a time when you took the initiative to improve a process or solve a problem without being asked. How did your actions contribute to the overall team or company?
  1. Our company encourages innovation and risk-taking. Can you share an example of a time when you took a calculated risk or proposed an innovative solution?
  1. How do you handle feedback and criticism? Can you provide an example of a time when you received constructive feedback and how you applied it?
  1. Our team values diversity and inclusion. Can you describe a situation when you worked with individuals from diverse backgrounds, and how you ensured everyone’s perspectives were heard and respected?
  1. What motivates you in a work environment? How do you see yourself contributing to our company’s mission and goals?

A way that W Talent Solutions ensures culture fit is using our evidence-based candidate selection. We work closely with the hiring manager to see that we find candidates that check all the boxes, whether it comes to work experience, successes in their careers and culture. Want to learn more about our processes? Contact us here!

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