Finding the Company Culture That Fits Your Personality

October 15, 2018
Finding the Company Culture That Fits Your Personality

Do you like working for your current organization? Does it enable to express your purpose, satisfy your needs, and use your interests, skills and other characteristics? Do you know what kind of company culture would best fit you?

Organizational culture is defined as the underlying beliefs, assumptions, values and ways of interacting that contribute to the unique social and psychological environment of an organization.

A good company-culture fit is important for job satisfaction, and personal and professional growth. It’s a critical but often neglected element of the job search process.

Organizational cultures
There are numerous way of categorizing company cultures. A simple way of classifying a company culture is bureaucratic, innovative or supportive. 

To clarify your preferred organizational culture, indicate the importance each of the following characteristics has for you, using the following criteria: 0 – not important, 1 – somewhat important, 2 – very important.

My ideal work organization
a. Has written procedures and policies.
b. Promotes individuality and creativity.
c. Encourages close working relationships.
a. Emphasizes systematic, efficient operation.
b. Has active, dynamic people.
c. Has friendly, warm people.
a. Has clear lines of authority and responsibility.
b. Develops a competitive, challenging environment.
c. Has people who trust and help one another.
a. Has rules that specify appropriate behavior.
b. Drives people toward excellence.
c. Fosters cooperative behavior.
a. Is prestigious and well established.
b. Is enterprising and entrepreneurial.
c. Is comfortable and secure.
a. Has a formal management style.
b. Has optimistic, progressive leadership.  
c. Has supervisors who give encouragement.
a. Stresses position, title and rank.
b. Encourages risk-taking and high expectations.
c. Emphasizes fair and equal treatment.
a. Has well structured work roles.
b. Has a stimulating atmosphere.
c. Has harmonious work relationships.
a. Is organized and business like.
b. Exerts pressure to get things done.
c. Has a team approach.
Scoring and interpretation
12 or more A points, suggests you’re motivated by power and prestige. You like bureaucratic, hierarchical companies that have clear lines of authority, fixed divisions of labor and a solid standing in the business community. You’re comfortable in structured, stable, power-oriented companies with written rules and guidelines.
Twelve or more B points indicate you’re motivated to accomplish challenging goals, are willing to risk, and set high expectations for yourself. You’re individualistic, ambitious. You prefer innovative cultures that are stimulating, creative, adventurous, competitive, enterprising and achievement-oriented.
Twelve or more C points implies you like developing relationships and friendships. You like supportive cultures which emphasize harmony, trust, equality, security, warmth and safety. You value colleagues who are sociable, friendly, cooperative, and encouraging.
Finding the right organization
Although bureaucratic, innovative, and supportive cultures exist in all organizations to varying degrees, many have an overall company culture as well as distinct subcultures. The overall culture of a large company may be bureaucratic but it may have an innovative research and development subculture, and a supportive clerical and maintenance subculture.
The type of industry also contributes to the company culture. What types of workplaces attract you? For example, would you want to work in a manufacturing company, hospital, airport, bank, museum, hotel, police station, university, retail store, your own business, private home, library, engineering firm, or other? Check the internet and telephone directories to identify the types of organizations that appeal to you.
Additional information about organizations can be obtained from a variety of sources including printed materials, the internet, informational interviews and company visits. Consult company annual reports, newspaper business sections, trade journals, business magazines, and directories such as those published by Dun and Bradstreet (Million Dollar Directory) and Moody’s Investors Services. Chambers of commerce, libraries, and your business contact network are valuable resources.
When researching companies identify: 1) mission statement; 2) structure, including number of employees, departments and hiring managers; 3) products made or services provided; 4) type of employees and your compatibility;  5) problems that need attention and how you can help; 6) supervisory, decision-making and communication styles; 7) promotional policies; 8) benefits, wage structure, and potential salary range; 9) history and growth prospects; 10) image, rank among competitors; 11) work space and employee morale; 12) professional development opportunities; 13) political environment; and 14) concern for employee health, safety, family and well-being.
If you do your research, you’ll find a company that has a culture, mission statement and other characteristics compatible with your personality, career goals, and desired organizational requirements.
Questers Dare to Change Your Job and Life by Carole Kanchier, offers additional suggestions for finding a good person-company fit.