In today’s collaborative workplaces, recruiters rarely look at job applicants as individuals. Instead, they evaluate applicants as future team members. Your ability to handle your individual responsibilities is important, but the affect you have on company culture and overall institutional success are major factors, too. Positioning yourself as a future employee that can fit into the culture in place and even enhance it for the good of all is a trait that is in high demand, regardless of the industry or workplace. Use these tips to show your recruiter that you have something extra to offer.
Do Your Homework
The first step is to get a sense of the company culture that is in place right now. Do research on the company, and seek out unusual sources. Access internal communications, read the company blog, speak to current or former employees, and read message boards online. Defining corporate culture is often a difficult process, but the more you know about it, the better you can position yourself as a logical addition to it.
How did you affect the company culture at your previous jobs? Did you ever help to lead or organize team building exercises, social outings, or special events? When you talk about your past work experience, don’t just stress your individual accomplishments and your ability to meet stated expectations. Talk about the ways you adapted to, reflected, and enhanced the culture around you.
Describe Your Personality
When given the opportunity, describe the aspects of your personality that make you a good fit for the company culture you will be stepping into. If an office is known for being fun and laid back, stress these aspects of your character. If an office is known for being driven and hard charging, find a way to demonstrate that you are like that all the time.
Create a Plan
When talking about company culture, it is easy to fall back on generalities and abstractions. To really demonstrate that you understand the culture in place and your role within it, brainstorm some specific ideas about how you would add to the existing culture. How can you expand upon or revise the posted job responsibilities to make them better reflect the company’s goals? What type of skills and experiences can you bring to the company that would affect it in unexpected ways? Addressing the issue explicitly shows the interviewer how seriously you take it.
Take Cues from Your Interviewer
Your interviewer is likely a reflection of the company culture that is in place. Observing the way that they carry themselves, speak about the company, and frame your place within it can help you pick up on the subtle and indefinable aspects of company culture. Pay close attention, and try to integrate your insights into the rest of the interview.
In today’s competitive job market, you may be competing with other applicants that have identical levels of education and experience. But if you can demonstrate that you are a good fit for a company, you immediately set yourself apart. Rely on the employment experts at Selectek to help you get that elusive advantage.