Why is Cultural fit so critical?
Written by: Greg Weiss
There is a kind of magic and thrill in the early stages of a new venture when you and a supportive team of friends are working on something that feels unique.
There’s that energy of anticipation, that sense of possibility as new clients come on board. This ramps up when the amount of business coming in means recruiting new team members to keep up with demand.
However as the team grows, many founder-owners find that the old magic from the early days starts to dissipate. They may even find the atmosphere within the organisation going off, and at worst, growing toxic.
Often – especially if the staff are competent – it’s not entirely apparent to the owner why this has happened, and they start to blame themselves.
That was the case with a recent client, who we’ll call ‘Jimmy’ Jimmy was running a business supporting the fintech industry which he’d started with the help of a small dedicated team. They had worked their socks off in the early days to overcome hurdles. With clear objectives and a growing client base, it was soon time to hire developers.
Jimmy assumed that any coder would do as long as they had the core skills required. However as each recruit started, the natural fit of this once close-knit team faded bit by bit.
Now with a staff of seven, cynicism, skepticism and backhanded comments were being made a little too often in the office and over Slack.
So, what went wrong?
Put simply: Fundamentally Jimmy’s recruitment process had not taken cultural fit into account.
Cultural fit can be defined as the level of alignment between the values, beliefs, and attitudes of a potential employee, and those of the organisation.
Gen Z and Millennials and known to place a company’s culture above other traditional criteria such as salary when deciding whether to accept a job offer.
A good match between the organisation’s culture and that of the new recruit is more important than ever.
Having this person alongside you is so important in that key growth stage when your business starts to expand its workforce because it’s crucial at the early stages to get everyone facing in the same direction and excited about what they are doing – which they will be if they share a belief in your values too.
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ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Greg authored 3 practical Career Books, and 1 Book helping Visionary leaders scale their businesses. He is one of Australia’s most experienced HR consultants and leading career coaches. He is the founder and owner of Soulidify and Career365. As an entrepreneur/business owner, Greg has experienced first-hand the joys and frustrations of starting and growing one’s own business.