What makes a job the perfect fit?
There are many things that you look for when you’re trying to find the perfect position at a new company, and there’s not going to be a one-size-fits-all answer when it comes to finding a great place to work.
You’ve got to learn about the corporate culture, research to see if they’re offering a salary and benefits package comparable to other options, and make sure you’re comfortable with your potential office space — if an office space is even involved.
When it comes to finding the perfect professional match for you, it can feel a lot like dating.
You may not be looking for a romantic partner to spend the rest of your life with, but you are trying to learn about the company to see if it “vibes” well with you. You want to work for a place that matches your personal values, makes you feel comfortable, and keeps things interesting as you invest your time and energy with them.
At DotConnect, we’re in the business of building relationships. We may not be professional matchmakers in the traditional sense, but we’re definitely all about building connections that make two parties happy.
And with all of the relationships we’ve built over the last 20 years, it’s safe to say that we’ve seen a few things when it comes to asking the right questions to find out if someone will be happy with their match.
So, if you’re out on the prowl and looking for a new job, you’ve come to the right place because, in this article, we will be talking about the questions you need to ask to make sure you will love your new job.
Let’s get started!
Question #1: What are the company values?
Have you ever been on a date, and they seemed like a perfect match until you started asking questions about what they found important?
We’re not talking about having a different favorite TV show or movie series — unless oppositional entertainment styles are a deal-breaker for you, we’re not here to judge. We were thinking more along the lines of disagreeing about how you should manage money or where your religious views lie.
You know, the things that can be overlooked for a little while but always turn into an argument later on down the road if you ignore them because they don’t match your core beliefs.
Know What You’re Getting Into
Differing company values can cause that exact problem in a professional relationship between employees and their employer.
At first, the pay increase and fancy benefits package may seem like a good thing. However, if the company you are working for doesn’t align with what you think is essential, there will be friction later on down the road.
That’s because your values are at the heart of everything you do. You use your values to navigate your life decisions and professional path, and if they don’t align with what your future company finds important, it won’t work out.
Before you get in over your head with a company you don’t mesh with, make sure your employer knows where your values stand. Do you emphasize integrity, honesty, service, or teamwork? If so, you need to find out if they feel the same way.
Your new company needs to put ethical stock in the same things that matter to you. And if they don’t, you need to break off that relationship before it starts because we can guarantee that it won’t work out.
Question #2: What is the strategy?
It’s no secret that communication is necessary for every lasting relationship.
When you look at those couples who have been married for 50 years and ask yourself, “How did they do it?” It comes down to communication ten times out of ten. Of course, there are supporting factors, but maintaining proper communication levels is critical for knowing that you are on the same page.
When people stop talking to each other, bad things happen. It could result in something as small as a misunderstanding or something as significant as breaking up.
Figure Out The Plan Before You Start
Communication works the same way at your job. You need to be actively communicating with your new employer, specifically regarding the strategies you’ll be utilizing from day to day at your new job.
You need to make sure that your potential new company employs strategies to achieve its goals in direct alignment with its values, and you also want to make sure that you feel comfortable using the same strategy.
We know that it’s tempting to enter a new work relationship thinking that you can change, but trust us, it is so much easier to start with a business you align with from the beginning.
Question #3: What Is the Demographic Makeup of the Team?
You want to know who the person you are dating is, right?
When you start a new relationship, you want to ask as many questions as possible to learn more about them. For example, you generally want to know where they’re from, what it was like for them growing up, and who they admire.
And if those things sync up with your background, you find another level of compatibility with each other.
You Want to Know Who You are Working With
Finding out the demographic of the team you’re about to join is just as important. You want to make sure that you mesh well with the overall demographics of the team and that your future employer celebrates diversity and inclusion in the workplace.
So as you enter your potential new workplace, take stock of who is already there. Is it a cookie-cutter team, or can you tell that the company celebrates people from all walks of life on their staff?
If, for any reason, you feel like you won’t be entering into a space that makes you feel safe, comfortable, and heard, it’s time to bounce. You need to find a place that values where you come from and what makes you unique.
Question #4: What is Important to the Team You Are Joining?
To build a successful relationship, you need to connect with their family on some level.
We know that everyone doesn’t get along with their in-laws, and that honestly has a lot to do with preconceived notions of the other party. However, there’s at least a mutual appreciation between you and your partner’s family in really great relationships.
When you’re able to get on board with your partner’s “team” and they get along with yours, it creates fewer problems in the long run.
You Need to Mesh With Your Future Team
Aligning with your new work team’s values is just as important as getting along with your significant other’s family. One key difference is that when you disagree with a coworker, you can’t always go home like you can if there’s an incident at the in-laws.
So, take some time to get to know your potential teammates if the opportunity presents itself — the last thing you want is to work with a group that drains your positive energy.
If you start to have a conversation with other people on the team and red flags start popping up, it’s a good sign to pack your bags and venture on to better opportunities.
You deserve to work with a team that accepts and appreciates you, so if there’s any chance that it won’t happen at your new job, don’t take the risk.
Question #5: Why Did Your Interviewer Join the Company? And Why Are They Still There?
We’re getting down to the end of our questions to ask before you start a new job, and with it comes the end of our relationship comparisons. But we may have one more left for you…
Actually, no. We’re all tapped out, so let’s just get into the business side of this one.
Asking why the interviewer is part of their company is an incredible window into the company culture. In our opinion, it can really teach you all you need to know about how the company treats its employees.
There are a few things you should listen for in the answers they give you: Does the interviewer feel supported by the company? Do they feel like they’ve been given room to grow and advance? And are their concerns taken seriously?
If your interviewer gives you any indication that they thought they were entering a relationship with Prince Charming and wound up with a frog instead, you need to run away and never look back.
Well, look at that. We did have another relationship comparison, after all.
We Can Help You Connect the Dots to Your Dream Job
We get that the interview process can be a daunting one and that you don’t always find “the one” on the first try, but with the right questions and a little discernment, you may be one step closer to your dream job.
However, if you feel like you need a little help finding your professional happily ever after, we can help. At DotConnect, we’re a team of talent acquisition specialists that puts conscious connection above all else. And when you partner with us, you know we have your best interests at heart.
We’ve helped some incredible companies like Samsung NEXT, Beautycounter, and ZenDesk find their dream teams. And each of those teams is made up of incredible humans like you, people who wanted a job where they felt appreciated as human beings long before they were seen as “productive employees.”
If you’re ready to take a step toward partnering with a team that wants to foster your growth, get in contact with us. We’d be more than happy to help!