The term "workplace culture" is often used to describe the mood or vibe within an office, but it involves much more than that. Leadership, environment, mission/values/vision, management, workplace practices, policies, people, and communication can all shape office culture and attract the right candidates to your business. To more and more college graduates joining the workforce, finding an office culture that fits their character is essential to finding the right job.
Having a strong workplace culture not only attracts talent, but also drives engagement, creativity, and happiness in the office. That, in turn, increases performance value. A mistake many companies make is to try to force a certain type of culture, rather than define the ideal culture and hire the people who best support it. When recruiting potential candidates, there are ways to promote your office culture to ensure you attract the right kind of person for your company.
Recruiters often use adjectives like "fun" or "vibrant" to describe office culture within a company, touting casual dress, office activities, work-life balance, and so on. Listing these types of benefits up front will help candidates decide if an office may be the right fit for them. Many candidates fresh out of college (especially millennials and Gen Z) are looking for office cultures with growth opportunities, whether that means the company funds personal career growth, like conferences and courses, or that there are plenty of opportunities for advancement.
Note to candidates: Be sure to read company reviews from other employees online, but use judgment. If most reviews say the company culture is great, but there are the odd one or two that say otherwise, don't get overly concerned and forego an interview. On the flip side, be wary about accepting a position with a company that has a multitude of negative reviews from past employees with only one or two positive reviews. While online reviews of all sorts are usually left by unhappy people, decide for yourself whether the issues in those reviews would be deal-breakers for you.
In-person interviews with multiple members of the team are essential for the existing team and the potential hire to decide if the office culture is a fit. A candidate who has a great resume may not mesh with the team as well as advertised on paper, and likewise, a company's culture in person may not match up with what was described in the job posting. Speaking to multiple members of the team and asking them questions about their experiences can help you determine if a company's mission/values are in synch with yours.
Social media is a great place to showcase your company culture and allow potential hires to connect with your team. At Greenleaf, we post "#MeetTheStaffMonday" on Instagram, spotlighting an employee a week to share fun facts about what they do and who they are. We also post about our office activities to promote our emphasis on work-life balance, and our work hard-play hard spirit.
Work culture is as important to promote as it is to nurture. If you invest time and resources into cultivating a positive work culture with happy employees, you'll stimulate creativity and performance, decrease turnover rates, and become a company where promising new employees can envision a thriving future.