If the interviewee asks you about the corporate culture, the candidate really wants to understand the demands of the job and the business’s work environment.
Most candidates are apprehensive about the work schedules, workloads, and deadlines that will be imposed upon them if they accept a specific job. By getting a clear answer to this question, the interviewee can see how his or her personal qualifications, desires, and attitudes will fit with the other employees and expectations of an organization.
Points to Emphasize
When you answer this question, you want to clearly define the strengths of the company and then relate these strengths to how the employees work and associate.
- State clearly the major strengths of the company.
- Explain a general range of work schedules, workloads, and deadlines that are expected in the organization.
- Emphasize how the company can adapt to different lifestyles and preferences.
- Describe how the company unites its diverse employees to create a unified culture.
- Mention specific, positive, and unique examples of company culture.
Mistakes You Should Avoid
When answering this question, you might begin by talking about religious or cultural diversity in the organization. Although this might be helpful, this is not what the interviewee is really asking.
- Do not exaggerate work schedules or hours to weed out the weak candidates.
- Be careful not to talk about numbers of different types of cultural identities of the company.
- Avoid only describing office outings or parties that are outside of the “work” culture.
- Do not say negative aspects of the company culture.
When you do not exaggerate work requirements and do not overemphasize perks of the job, you provide a balanced description of the corporate culture that will be useful to the candidate.
An example of positive answer to this question could be like this:
In ABC Company, we have always been dedicated to helping our customers get excellent customer service. For that reason, our corporate culture revolves around creating a positive, flexible environment for our employees that helps them exude optimism to our clients. We expect 40 hours a week of top-notch customer service and hard work. To help our employees, we allow workers to work from home several days a week, and provide a supportive work environment that gives them breaks, vacation, and sick leave to keep up employee morale.
When you clearly outline the company’s culture, the candidate will understand the demands of the job and the benefits of working at the company. This understanding will help the interviewee to characterize how he or she will fit into the company’s structure. With honest, upfront answers, you avoid downstream surprises that can affect the long-term retention of employees.