Company culture is becoming a key factor for most of us when considering a job offer, possibly ranking in equal importance with financial perks and career progression.
Entrepreneur.comA�asserts that this is particularly relevant for millennials, as theya��ve grown up in a world of financial prosperity and rapid technological advancements. Their expectations of a career are vastly different from the older generation, with higher priorities on company values, meaning, community and culture. But how do we obtain accurate information of all these? Read on.
Lead with a�?What are the companya��s corporate values?a�?
This will tell you what matters most to them. Are they progressive in outlook, or conservative? Do they prioritise their employeesa�� well being, or are they primarily driven by profit margins? If they are unable to answer the question, or give vague answers, prompt them with this follow-up question: a�?What are the top 3 focus areas for the organisation at the moment?a�?
Their answer to that will tell you what drives the organisation.
Lead with a�?How is the office setup? Is it an open plan office?a�?, and follow up with a�?Whata��s the energy level in the office on an ordinary work day?a�?
Their response to these questions will give you a glimpse of their typical working environment. If you like peace and quiet while youa��re working but the company favours an energetic, vibrant workforce, thata��s probably not the right environment for you.
3. Organisation Structure
Lead with a�?How many people are involved in the approval of my daily tasks?a�?
From there, you can probe a bit more about the general decision-making process to suss out how bureaucratic or open the organisation structure is.
Lead with a�?What are the key deliverables for my job?a�? and go on to questions such as a�?What is the companya��s policy on flexi-hours or remote working (or any other aspect)?a�?
If you have or are planning to have children in the near future, this will be a good time to find out how the company feels about employees with kids and what parental benefits they offer (e.g. paternity/maternity leave, family medical coverage, etc).
5. Leadership & Management
This is probably one of the trickiest topics to broach at an interview. You dona��t want to come off as critical when you havena��t even landed the gig. On the other hand, if you pose the question in an intelligent manner, it might score you bonus points with the interviewer.
We would suggest leading with a�?How much autonomy will I have in my job?a�? This will tell you whether your direct manager will be breathing down your neck, and pave the way for you to probe further with questions such as a�?Is there much interaction between employees and the CEO or senior management?a�?
The kind of questions you should ask really depends on whata��s important to you, and the kind of company culture thata��s right for you, but these are 5 essential questions to start with. Dona��t forget that ita��s not just what they say in response, but how they say it that will tell you what you need to know.
Observe their body language when you pose your questions, and when they answer. Often our facial expressions and posture will change with our thought process, revealing more than what our words say.