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Old 01-26-2014, 03:54 PM
 
47,573 posts, read 60,679,370 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mialia View Post
to me, cultural fit is the way that companies get away with age and gender discrimination.

...like, everyone in the marketing department is in their 30's. Fat chance of a qualified 50 something getting hired into that team.

Fair? no way. I'm in my 30's and really haven't had to face a "cultural fit" issue personally, because well, 30'something isn't too young, and it isn't too old. But I totally understand 20'somethings feeling that companies don't hire them because of "cultural fit," whereas it's because they are too "young." same thing in the over 50 club.
Some of the very worst places for age and gender discrimination are strip clubs and nightclubs that try to bring in a 20-30 years age range.
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Old 01-26-2014, 04:13 PM
 
Location: Southern California
3,455 posts, read 7,306,202 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by the_grimace View Post
I'll be doing a talk on the pros and cons of hiring for company culture, and I was wondering if anyone had any good arguments against cultural fit being such an important factor in today's hiring process. The trend I see in nearly all companies is a ton of emphasis and effort placed in finding people who fit with the company's mold on personal levels. Skills, qualifications, and competence by themselves hardly seem to get you anywhere these days.

I've always personally been against the big emphasis on cultural fit hiring, because as someone who puts massive effort into buffing up my skills and qualifications, I often feel discriminated against when the guy with 5 years less experience than me gets the job instead because he fit the company culture and I didn't. I also feel it lets employers be way too picky about hires, leading to lengthy interview processes, understaffed teams, and lots of unemployed folks getting led on. These are just all my feelings though, and I'm just one guy. Feelings can hardly be used for evidence in an informative speech!

Does anyone have any good arguments of why it might be better to hire just for higher competence rather than better company fit?
personally I'm against it (I mean, to a degree -- I mean, I wouldn't be hiring apes or anything).

I've been in a few situations where this is evident and I think its generally bad.

Once I was part of a (somehow made the cut on appearance I think) young hip team, most of them with super impressive graduate degrees but little experience. I had transferred onto this team from another more stoic department.

There were raging happy hours, and lots and lots of gossip and hooking up. I was shocked by how these people conducted themselves. They were young and totally unprofessional -- but I seemed to be the only one who cared or noticed. I hated it and wanted out (and got out). There were a few outliers ...and I think those people probably felt as uncomfortable as me. They never even got invited to the happy hours. I was just popular enough to be gossiped about by the other girls.... I felt this was a very dangrous work enviornment especially when one of the managers was also very young (and hip). And yeah, they kept hiring young and hip.

I moved on and 2 years later I heard that team was basically barred from federal contracts due to an impropriety from a top manager, they were put on suspension for a length of time.

Currently I'm part of another still fairly young techie type company where there is pressure to be a nerd. This actually suits me better, but they keep hiring nerds and the leadership and project management is ....well, lets just say they are still growing and it needs a lot of work. But in my opinion, which I've shared with several people, they would be wise to hire a few more seasoned white haired people what I've found is people are more concerned with "being nice" than they are with finding good quality leaders that can develop people and manage programs and projects. I actually miss reporting to someone super senior to me where I feel like I really have a lot to learn from them.

So, I'm for diversity -- it creates better boundaries in the workplace. Hiring for culture is like hiring your own dysfunctional family.
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Old 01-26-2014, 04:17 PM
 
Location: Southern California
3,455 posts, read 7,306,202 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by the_grimace View Post
To each their own. Frankly I think working with adult children who treat work like an adult playground and are unreliable, unskilled, and incompetent are a pain in the ass to deal with.
here here....are you hiring?
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Old 01-26-2014, 04:19 PM
 
Location: Southern California
3,455 posts, read 7,306,202 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by notoriouskelly View Post
Many say they want to hire someone who thinks out of the box; they fail to mention that they don't want him thinking outside of THEIR box.

Iron sharpens iron; seems my best friends are those who initially butted heads with me, so if I 'hired' friends based on cultural fit we'd both have missed out on some rich experiences.

Hiring only those who 'fit' ensures mediocrity. Companies need to challenge themselves more.
totally agree. I think this is what my company is missing.
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Old 01-26-2014, 04:25 PM
 
Location: Southern California
3,455 posts, read 7,306,202 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rosie_hair View Post
This is the real world. You shouldn't treat everything in absolutes like this.

The keyword is everything with moderation. Everyone in my office take work very seriously. Case in point. Our contractor made a type-o in their bill to us. One of the equipment they used was a x267. They typed in x367. And this was written in font 2 (very tiny). One of our guys caught this and made the contractor retype out the bill before we would pay for it.

We also joke around in the office. We've been talking about aliens, time travel, food, our earliest childhood memories, etc. Because my RE (my boss) finds and hires his own people rather than let the firm's HR department do it, I'm convinced that he purposely hired people who can personally fit into his team of engineers.

I've also worked in an office environment where there were people who took work very seriously and are a--holes about it. What people like you don't understand is people in general are less productive in an unfriendly work environment. And unfortunately, often times a--holes who are very efficient workers tend to become managers, which gives them the opportunity to make everyone else's life miserable. And again, I don't understand why people like you don't understand that a stressed out worker is a lot less productive than a happy worker.

Back during times of slavery, there was a saying. A healthy slave can do lots of work the whole day. A sick slave can do mediocre work half a day. And a dead slave can do no work at all.

The same concept applies to today's work force. Don't get me wrong, if you think efficiency should trump culture fit, then god bless you for it. But based on my years of experience, efficiency with no culture fit will drive the company down to the ground. I've seen plenty of examples in my life. I'm just glad my boss feels the same way and has assembled his team with people that can both handle the work and can joke around, easing the stress and tension that naturally build up in an office environment.
I'm all for good personalities at work.

But it seems people just have trouble with boundaries, which ultimately leads to a bad work situation. If people feel like they are still dealing with high school cliques at work, that is more stress than is needed with work but particularly if you feel your performance will not be evaluated fairly since you are not part of the "in crowd"

I think nowadays people are hiring more for work CULT culture than work fit !!
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Old 01-26-2014, 06:54 PM
 
1,115 posts, read 1,999,343 times
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I think one consideration is that a person who doesn't fit the company culture can actually love the job. This was me in my first professional job. I worked for 2 years as a temp. contractor with a company and I absolutely loved my job. I had high morale, high efficiency, and never got a negative performance report.

I did not match the company culture at all though. The majority of people were party goers and bar hoppers. Happy hours at work were a common thing, and they would get kegs and a variety of other alcohol for office parties quite frequently. Most people played more than they worked, and generally things fell behind schedule. Yea, that wasn't me.

All and all, I did really love that job, but eventually got passed over for a full-time position because "I didn't mesh well with the team." (and that is straight from the manager's mouth). They hired a new college grad. with no experience that the team met a few months ago at a business convention after party. They got chummy, and the new "best bud" got hired instead of me.

Hard to say if the rest of the team truly felt that me not fitting the company culture was holding them back, but I feel it's more like they just wanted someone to work with who would be their best friend (more like them) rather than actually be more efficient. Regardless, I still loved that position so the idea that a person who doesn't fit the company culture won't love the work is not always true.
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Old 01-26-2014, 07:47 PM
 
47,573 posts, read 60,679,370 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by the_grimace View Post
I think one consideration is that a person who doesn't fit the company culture can actually love the job. This was me in my first professional job. I worked for 2 years as a temp. contractor with a company and I absolutely loved my job. I had high morale, high efficiency, and never got a negative performance report.

I did not match the company culture at all though. The majority of people were party goers and bar hoppers. Happy hours at work were a common thing, and they would get kegs and a variety of other alcohol for office parties quite frequently. Most people played more than they worked, and generally things fell behind schedule. Yea, that wasn't me.

All and all, I did really love that job, but eventually got passed over for a full-time position because "I didn't mesh well with the team." (and that is straight from the manager's mouth). They hired a new college grad. with no experience that the team met a few months ago at a business convention after party. They got chummy, and the new "best bud" got hired instead of me.

Hard to say if the rest of the team truly felt that me not fitting the company culture was holding them back, but I feel it's more like they just wanted someone to work with who would be their best friend (more like them) rather than actually be more efficient. Regardless, I still loved that position so the idea that a person who doesn't fit the company culture won't love the work is not always true.
Just like countries, every workplace has a certain culture of it's own. Why work where you don't fit in?

I've worked a number of jobs -- the cultures of some were not to my liking so I moved on.

One thing in the workplace, it's pretty important to understand the culture and accept it -- you have to work with others, like it or not, team work is considered important today in the work place. It's not just the actual work, it's how you relate and interact with others also.

For example if you think everyone else is a mindless bimbo or you judge them all negatively, that's going to come across. If you work with highly social types who like to celebrate birthdays and holidays and have pot-lucks but you're a bah-humbug type, it ruins the cohesiveness --- like it or not.

Why not just find a workplace where the culture is to your liking?
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Old 01-26-2014, 08:42 PM
 
265 posts, read 342,532 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by malamute View Post
Just like countries, every workplace has a certain culture of it's own. Why work where you don't fit in?

I've worked a number of jobs -- the cultures of some were not to my liking so I moved on.

One thing in the workplace, it's pretty important to understand the culture and accept it -- you have to work with others, like it or not, team work is considered important today in the work place. It's not just the actual work, it's how you relate and interact with others also.

For example if you think everyone else is a mindless bimbo or you judge them all negatively, that's going to come across. If you work with highly social types who like to celebrate birthdays and holidays and have pot-lucks but you're a bah-humbug type, it ruins the cohesiveness --- like it or not.

Why not just find a workplace where the culture is to your liking?
because not everyone has the immediate option to instantly find a different workplace, with all information on that work places culture, before actually begging at that job.

or maybe because they still love the actual work they do along with the pay and benefits structure...

as for cultural fit, it might not be a good idea to hire due to cultural fit because that applicant might not be all that qualified in every other respect. i've seen it multiple times years ago when i was doing the call center tours (from sales to csr to it).
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Old 01-26-2014, 09:41 PM
 
1,305 posts, read 1,320,582 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by limbo24 View Post
because not everyone has the immediate option to instantly find a different workplace, with all information on that work places culture, before actually begging at that job.

or maybe because they still love the actual work they do along with the pay and benefits structure...

as for cultural fit, it might not be a good idea to hire due to cultural fit because that applicant might not be all that qualified in every other respect. i've seen it multiple times years ago when i was doing the call center tours (from sales to csr to it).
Which is why I said earlier that everything should be done with moderation. No one here is advocating the hiring of idiots just because they know how to party.

My office is one of those that celebrates birthdays. Last time we had a birthday, the office ordered tons of food and drinks for everyone. I happened to have been out doing an inspection on a construction site at the time. I got a call from my boss telling me there was about 5 tons of food in the office and I needed to get back to celebrate person x's birthday. I told him I wasn't finished with my inspection for the report yet, and he told me that could wait.

And as someone else has already pointed out, sometimes teamwork is more important than having an anti-social hotshot in the team, especially when our project depends on teamwork. We got engineers from all kinds of specialties, and in order for this project to go well everyone must be able to get along and coordinate well enough. Every mistake costs money. There's simply no room for any anti-social hotshot that thinks he doesn't need anyone else.
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Old 01-26-2014, 10:18 PM
 
Location: MN
1,305 posts, read 1,410,515 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rgb123 View Post
I'm all for good personalities at work.

But it seems people just have trouble with boundaries, which ultimately leads to a bad work situation. If people feel like they are still dealing with high school cliques at work, that is more stress than is needed with work but particularly if you feel your performance will not be evaluated fairly since you are not part of the "in crowd"

I think nowadays people are hiring more for work CULT culture than work fit !!
Oh yeah, this is absolutely true.

I live relatively close to the Target Corporate headquarters and from what I have read online and heard from people in person-- if you don't fit into their culture, you're out or soon to be out. It doesn't matter if you are very good at your job and perform well or exceed expectations. Target, along with a lot of other companies, set the expectation about the kind of personality you must have to succeed, all the way down to how you dress, wear your hair, or even take your lunch breaks. A lot of workplaces still host high school cliques, but the saying nowadays goes if you want to keep you job join it unless you want to lose your job.
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