With Valentine’s Day fast approaching it seems everywhere you look there are ads for dating sites geared towards finding the perfect relationship. It’s the season of love and over at 24 Seven, we recommend taking a closer look at another very important relationship, the relationship you have with your career. I saw an ad for a popular dating website that talks about finding the right match with compatibility testing. This led me to the question, is finding a corporate match like finding a romantic match? When we spend on average 50 or so hours a week in the office, should we apply the practices we use to finding a partner, to finding a job?
A quick Google search can let us know almost everything about a person without actually meeting them. Details about someone’s personal and professional life are both readily available. Researching someone before a first date is a way of determining right off the bat what you have in common and if the possibility for a meaningful connection (the ultimate goal) is there.
The cultural fit or compatibility that we are looking for in our partners, we need to look for from our jobs too. The US National Library of Medicine National Institutes of Health recently stated that, “In the current research, we test the idea that emotional fit with culture (EFC) is linked to psychological well-being – i.e., being satisfied with oneself, having positive feelings, accepting one’s body and having no symptoms of depression.” Emotions impact how well people perform tasks, how engaged, creative, and how committed they are to the project at hand. The job hunt falls along these lines, both for candidates and managers alike. When you get your first interview, do as much research as possible, as you would before a first date.
It’s important to determine whether or not this new company is going to make you feel at home. Go to the company’s website and read their “About Us” section. Learn about their core values, how they were founded and what cultural ideals they uphold. After a scan of the company page, check out reviews on websites like Glassdoor. Of course these reviews should be taken with a grain of salt, but keep an eye out for any common themes that run throughout.
Another important outlet to check out is the company’s social media presence. Much like vetting a potential date, vet the company. Check out their LinkedIn and the types of employees that work there. Also look at their Facebook, Instagram and Twitter pages. This should give you a sense of the types of communities and trends that are important to organization.
When you get to the interview remember it’s a two-way street, while the interviewer is trying to determine if you’re the right person for the role, it’s also an opportunity for you to figure out if the company’s culture is right for you. To determine if you’ve made a match ask questions such as:
- What will my average day look like?
- What is your favorite part about working here?
- What is your least favorite part about working here?
- How long have you been working here?
- What is the attire?
- Will I be part of a team or working primarily on my own?
- Do I report to you consistently or will I have scheduled meetings to check in?
- Are there training and/orprofessional development programs or incentives.
Also, while you are in the office make sure you take note of the environment around you. How are the desks laid out, is it an open office plan or will you be sitting alone? Is it silent and everyone has headphones on or is it noisy and everyone is working and chatting?
At the end of the interview go home and think about everything you’ve learned about the job and company. Is this a place where you could be happy and productive? Will you grow with this company, much like you would grow and mature in a relationship? These are all important facts to consider before you accept their offer of “going steady”.