Interviewing For Cultural Fit

Culture defines how employees make meaning about the work that they do.

How To Hire

Workplace culture is defined as ways of thinking, behaving and working in an organization that provides boundaries for where employees can and cannot place value.

The issue comes when the personal culture that an employee comes from doesn’t match the culture of the organization that they are joining.

In other contexts, this disruption is noted as lack of product market fit, and typically, in the open market, when an organization makes something that no one wants to buy, they go out of business.

When we think of hiring, the interview process is used as a way to avoid—or minimize—the detrimental results of a lack of product (people) market (job) fit.

However, these days the interview process is so artificial and so unable to determine if a person can actually do the job for which they have been hired, it is a wonder we haven’t done away with it.

Conflicts in the workplace arise from the get-go, because the initial person/organization fit is poor, and then they escalate when two people, tasked to work together to accomplish a company goal, can’t get along with each other and disagree about where they fit in the organization.

Cultural interpersonal conflicts at work are corrosive, damaging and dangerous and could probably be avoided if–instead of asking a series of artificial questions, or filing out meaningless, psychological assessments—the hiring organization could discover each individuals’ story about why they want to work for an organization in a particular position.

Would this be harder, more time consuming and require a deeper level of emotional intelligence on the part of the hiring committee? Sure. But firing and rehiring are just as time consuming and harder still.

-Peace Be With You All-

Jesan Sorrells, MA
Principal Conflict Engagement Consultant
Human Services Consulting and Training (HSCT)
Email HSCT:

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *