It may be a common interview question, but that doesn’t make it the only reason to figure out what your ideal work environment is. You can always find things to say to the hiring managers that will satisfy their queries and land the job for you. However, in the long run, it only means risking your job satisfaction.
With 74% of employees saying company culture is a critical job satisfaction factor and only 19% of employees believing they have the “right culture,” determining whether a company’s work environment is the right fit for you or not is as important as ensuring your salary matches your expectations. So, instead of preparing for the perfect answer for your interviewer, you need to first establish your ideal work environment for yourself.
But how do you do that?
It all starts with self-awareness and understanding how you work best to determine the work culture that can help your personality thrive. Ask yourself these three questions and divide the chosen companies based on your answers.
What Motivates and Inspires You to Get the Job Done?
Is it solitude? Or positive people around you? Would it be easier to work in the comfort of your house or on a desk in a professional setting?
Your answers to such questions and others like these will help you ascertain the characteristics of a company.
For instance, if you find that a structure where reporting to someone for work and someone reporting to you for the same keeps you on your toes and helps you manage work better, a company with a flat hierarchy would not be suitable for you.
What Are Your Strengths and How Can You Leverage Them?
If you’re the kind of person who can handle unexpected challenges efficiently, a startup environment would be ideal for you. Or, if you’re good with building relationships with the people you interact with, choosing a remote working environment would not be playing to your strengths. It isn’t only about understanding what you are best at but choosing a company whose culture is based upon those characteristics.
Can You Connect With the Current Employees?
Do your research and find out about the values, culture, and employees’ job satisfaction levels of the company you have shortlisted. You can even interact with the current employees through social media and find out what they think about the company.
Think of it like this – If you wanted to buy a particular car, you would consult your peers who have the same vehicle. You would also probably go online to find out what the experience of other people has been with the car. Then, if you feel that people who are similar to you found the car to be a right choice, you would consider buying it. Do the same for your job. If you can connect with the current employees, and if they like their jobs, it most probably means that you would like working there too.
Are You Ready?
The right work environment is always more critical to a successful career than having the salary you want when you want it. A work culture that feeds off of your strengths will still allow you more room to express your potential and make a name for yourself.
So, if you are in the process of looking for a job or have already landed an offer, make sure to gain an insight into the work culture of the company you are interviewing at. Remember, a company is as equally resourceful to you as you are to it in shaping up your career, so always examine the variables at play before making an investment as necessary as your time to a company‘s cause.