There are many important things to consider when applying for an internship or job. There are the basic requirements like salary and location but there is another important piece to the puzzle—company culture. Many people emphasize the importance of company culture; however, few people know how to find the right one.
Get to know yourself.
Knowing yourself will make it easier to find a company culture that fits you. Understand what type of environment you work best in: Do you prefer a laid-back or buttoned-up atmosphere? Do you like to work with a hands-on leader or someone who gives you more freedom? Knowing what you want will help you find a company that is the perfect fit for you.
Get to know the company.
Once you have completed your self-evaluation, it’s time to determine the type of culture in which you want to work. One of the best ways to get a feel for a company’s culture is to visit its office. If possible, reach out to someone in the company and ask if you can spend some time at their office so you can experience what an average day is like for their employees. Most of the time this will be done through an informational interview with a human resources representative. This is also a great way to start building a relationship with employees in the company and grow your professional network. If you walk into an office and the stark white walls and sleek furniture make you feel at home, then there’s a good chance the people will too.
Do your research.
Now it’s finally time to find a company that fits your criteria. Doing your research always pays off and finding a company culture that fits you is no exception. A great way to get a feel for a company’s culture is to take a look at its website and find its mission statement. From there you can ask yourself, does this organization’s core values and ideals match mine? Working for a company that has the same objectives as you will make your work experience significantly more enjoyable.
There is a great deal of work that goes into finding the right company but trust me when I say that it pays off in the end. Finding a company culture that fits you is critical and when you find the right one, you’ll wake up every morning excited to go to work.
Heather Griffith is a sophomore at The University of Alabama studying public relations and international studies. She currently serves as the vice president of marketing for her school’s PRSSA Chapter. Connect with Heather on Twitter and LinkedIn.