By Stephanie Cox

Companies that hire for cultural fit are usually more productive and well-liked by their workforce. However, unconscious biases can lead hiring managers to choose candidates who share things in common with themselves instead of the company’s values. RC Search Group is here to help organizations hire exceptional candidates who are truly matched with their culture.

The key when hiring for cultural fit is to avoid ‘copies’ of your existing workforce. In a study by Lauren Rivera, decision makers were more likely to hire those who went to similar schools, vacationed in the same places, or did similar athletics. This can lead to candidates who have the right skills and values to be overlooked because they have a different background. Without a third party like RC Search Group, hiring managers can confuse ‘this person is a social fit for me’ with ‘this person is a culture fit for the company.’

Your firm can address this by defining your culture beyond vague catch phrases like ‘we’re a family.’ Whatever that culture really is, it must align with the company’s overall mission. Rivera points out Southwest Airlines as an example, as they promote a culture of ‘fun and love.’ Sounds silly, but the pleasant flight attendants with their sometimes-zany PA announcements actually unload and board passengers faster!

Second, make sure to include skills or behavioral assessments in the interview process. Assessments like this can help your organization see the candidate pool from a technical or behavioral perspective. Ask RC Search Group how skill and behavioral based evaluations can help you identify the right candidate. Understanding how personal biases influence the hiring process will spotlight who might really be the overall best choice.

Rivera, Lauren. “Stop Hiring for ‘Cultural Fit.’” Kellogg Insight, 4 Aug. 2020, insight.kellogg.northwestern.edu/article/cultural-fit-discrimination.

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