One month from graduation from a Big Ten school, Madison receives an invitation to come to NY to interview with a Fortune 500 company. For a couple years now she had been a part of the company's recruitment process and had participated in their campus activities. The previous summer she considered an internship there before something closer to home (and her boyfriend) opened up.
She had the grades and the resume that would make her a strong candidate for a position there and she knew it. Her college career had been a series of leadership positions and assorted triumphs. It seemed that every organization she joined enlisted her into a leadership position soon afterwards.
Six months later she was miserable in her dream job and Facticiti had the answers as to why. Despite having the qualifications to work at this company, her style was Active/Assertive,her dream company was Rational/Reasonable. She enjoyed a busy day where progress towards a goal is clear and became becoming impatient when she sensed that progress is stalled by over analyzing a situation. Her supervisor loved to think through every element of every issue and was not happy until everyone gave input. As a result they made great decisions but at a snails pace.
Madison had looked forward to making friends at work who were equally as ambitious as she was and who didn’t mind a little competition. Instead her coworkers preferred a collaborative style and resented her attempts to “show off”. Soon they worked to sabotage her efforts as a means to “keep her in her place.”
Finally, she wanted a supervisor she could observe and taught through actions. her supervisor scheduled weekly 90 minute meetings where they would go through her work in meticulous detail, analyzing each part. Each perceived mistake was considered a teachable moment and soon Madison was crawling out of her skin.
Forbes reports that as many as 89% of hiring failures are due to poor cultural fit. In fact, companies like Psynet Group and RoundPegg focus on helping companies accurately assess their culture, and then assess job candidates for fit with the culture. The Forbes article puts the onus on companies to match culture with candidates but the impact is much harder on the candidate than the company when a job fails due to culture mismatch.
Share your stories of being in the perfect job but in a culture that did not fit? How long did it take you to figure out that culture fit was as important as job fit? What were the key signs that you were in the wrong company?