Many companies are prioritizing cultural fit in their hiring process in the hopes of finding someone who can not only do the job, but can also fit in with the existing culture.
To find these best-fit candidates, some hiring managers are bringing in current employees, potential co-workers, into the interview process. Needless to say, applicants who plow through this situation as if it were just a standard interview aren’t doing themselves any favors.
It’s a good idea to come into every interview with questions for potential co-workers just in case you find yourself in one of these “peer interviews.”
“What do you like and what do you dislike about working here?”
Sitting down with potential co-workers offers you the chance to get a sense of what’s good and what’s bad at this company. Hopefully, your potential co-worker responds to this question with a genuine response that includes real information. On the other hand, a rehearsed, “this is what the company wants me to say” type of response should raise a red flag.
For instance, a potential co-worker might tell you they genuinely enjoy running department meetings from time to time, a response that tells you something about how the company values communication, information and the empowerment of its employees.
However, if the potential co-worker says the work is “fulfilling” or “challenging at times,” ask a follow-up question; don’t let this person off the hook for such a vague response.
“How does the company focus on team development?”
Research shows job satisfaction is strongly based on the relationships we have at work, and this question is a great way to find out if a company tries to build strong relationships among its employees.
When tossing this question out to multiple interviewers, you should look for hesitation or inconsistencies. Think about it: If the company makes a strong effort to build bonds among its staff, they should all be on the same page when it comes to answering this question.
Ideally, you should hear about interesting programs that boost both teamwork and employees’ professional growth. Good examples include off-site innovation meetings, skills-development groups or even a company softball team.
“What should I expect from the onboarding process?”
Inquiring about the support that new employees get can give you a sense of how the organization values its workforce.
Ideally, this question will also give you a sense for expectations surrounding new employees. Specifically, you should determine the process for dealing with mistakes from a new worker.
Rookie mistakes will happen and everyone in an organization should have training on how to support new employees when they make a mistake. Essentially, you want a company culture that is supportive, understanding and encourages professional development.
If a potential co-worker says something like, “We really hope you won’t make too many errors,” it could be a sign this organization has a sink-or-swim mentality.
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At ZDA, we help job seekers with everything from interview prep to resume writing. Please contact a leading supply chain recruiter if you’re looking for assistance in your upcoming supply chain job search.