13 Interview Questions to Assess Cultural Fit

September 12, 2019

46% of newly hired employees fail within the first 18 months

The reason behind their failure doesn’t reflect their lack of capability or skills, but they failed because their work habits, and personality didn’t mesh well with the company’s culture. This is why hiring for a cultural fit is important for organizations.

Why Should You Hire For A Cultural Fit?

There’s a difference between hiring for a job fit and hiring for a cultural fit. While hiring for a cultural fit, you need to look beyond the candidate’s experience, skills and knowledge. Obviously, we all want a candidate that knows how to excel in their job. Yet, at the same time, we also need to hire a person that has the potential to adapt to your company’s values, mindset and attitude. It has nothing to do with sharing the same interests, lifestyle, and hobbies. Cultural fit is mainly about your company’s environment and the expectations you have from your workers.

Different organizations have different norms when it comes to the organization’s culture. For instance, some companies have formal working environment, while other firms follow a team-based culture. And, many other companies pursue more of a casual working atmosphere without rules and regulations.

How Should You Hire For A Cultural Fit?

First and foremost, you need to clearly define and converse your company’s culture. This should start with your job ads. They should exhibit your business culture. This foundation will help you in assessing what qualifies as a ‘good cultural fit’ for your company. As a hiring consultant, the end goal is not to hire an employee who is more skillful and experienced. Instead, it is to identify and hire someone whose values and skills match the company’s culture and core values.

Here are 13 interview questions that will help you to assess the cultural fit of your next candidate:

  1. What was the most frustrating thing about working at your last company?
  2. What keeps you motivated about coming to work?
  3. Describe your ideal work environment?
  4. What’s your preferred working style – individual or teamwork
  5. How do you handle failure?
  6. How do you handle disappointments?
  7. What characteristics would you ideally want to have in your boss?
  8. From whom you get inspiration from and why?
  9. What is your preferred way to communicate with coworkers?
  10. Where do you see yourself in the next five years?
  11. Give a scenario and ask the candidate to critique it
  12. What do you do in your spare time ?
  13. What is a charity organization that you are passionate about?

Time to decide

There you have it. 13 interview questions to help you to assess whether or not your next candidate is the right cultural fit for your company.

Remember, don’t look for someone who just wants to come in and do the job. Instead, hire someone whose working style and behaviour are well harmonized with the style and values of your company. Choose a cultural fit candidate over a job fit employee and you will see the difference.

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