It’s no secret that cultural fit matters to both the employer and the employee. Culture and values makes the biggest impact on job satisfaction, according to Glassdoor Research.
But what if job seekers took this concept a step further? Instead of focusing on showing hiring managers how you fit in the culture, demonstrate how you will contribute to the culture.
Here’s your ultimate step-by-step guide:
1. Research the company.
There are multiple online resources where you can find a lot of helpful information about the company, their culture, and their vision. Review their Glassdoor profile, website, social media accounts, and find recent press releases to keep up-to-date on their services and products.
Many companies post frequently, sharing information about their staff and office space. Look at who they hire and what their staff looks like. Are they primarily young or do they hire diverse age groups and ethnicities? Do they offer an open office space or a traditional layout with cubicles?
Try to find information about hiring managers. Look for names, faces, and details about their role. If they post an interesting article on their Twitter or LinkedIn profile, comment on it during the interview process. Use these details as talking points.
Your goal is to know as much about the company as you can so you can show your interest in joining their team.
2. Focus on values.
It’s crucial to know your core values and create a mission statement before pursuing employment because it helps you articulate your personality and character. Plus, you can use them to compare to the company’s set of values.
Take notes on any similarities and write examples about how you applied these values in your life. You’re demonstrating how you will contribute to their organizational goals.
It’s best to hone in on a few specific values. For example, if the company values environmental conservation, describe how you volunteer for clean-ups or donate to a wildlife organization. If the company listed authenticity, share a story about how your genuine approach to selling a product helped make a conversion and allowed you to grow the business.
These examples act as the foundation for your action plan.
3. Develop an action plan.
Create future intentions out of the examples you wrote down. How do you plan on contributing to their environmental stewardship? How would you use authenticity to succeed in your role?
Review company goals and demonstrate how you expect to help the company achieve them. This is the foundation of your action plan.
Aside from showing your interest, you’re also proving your communication skills and demonstrating a positive attitude by presenting actionable solutions in a proactive way. These desirable skills are important to develop so you can effectively discuss your plan and nail the interview.
4. Deliver your message.
Once you’ve edited and refined your action plan, it’s time to get it in the hands of the hiring team. This may require some digging, but usually there are several channels you can go through.
If you can find a hiring manager’s contact information, write a professional email explaining how you recently submitted an application and wanted to share an action plan that you hoped to discuss in the future. You could also upload it along with a cover letter if the employer uses an application software.
If all else fails in the digital world, take an old school approach and drop off physical copies at the office. Overall, employers will be impressed by your motivation and persistence.
Bottom line: A successful action plan is engaging. It doesn’t have to be right, but it needs to grab the reader and entice them to reach out to you for further conversation. In other words, it’s time to nail your interview!
5. Explain the plan during your interview.
Congratulations! You made it to the big leagues, and now is your time to shine. Bring copies of your action plan and explain how you expect to execute these practices. Offer specific solutions and request feedback.
While your plan may not be realistic or accurate, you are at least starting a conversation and establishing your passion and motivation.
How are you demonstrating your value to potential future employers?