More than 90 % of CEOs say that culture is important but only 15 % say their firm’s corporate culture is where it needs to be.
What is Company Culture
First, let’s define what a company culture is. It denotes a certain set of distinctions from other and similar companies. This will always start with an overall philosophy of the company. Its culture will also entail the way the company deals with its partners and customers.
How to Spot a Fake Culture
When you take time to investigative at a company’s culture, you can see a certain potential for faking parts of it and making a company seem a much better employer than it actually is. How can we spot this?
Spot Online Red Flags
Check the employers and employees social accounts on Facebook and Twitter. Are they only re-sharing posts without any comment? Is their account organic or just auto-posted? When it’s organic, is the tone good or violent or sarcastic or disrespectful?
Check their blog(s) and read if the content is self-centered. Even “sharing” if it’s always about stuff about them is not a good way to share.
Are they present on any open live chat like slack in any way? Check how they talk, you could see a different tone between the “look how we are good” and “Listen, I talk bad to you if I want”. Avoid these people, it’s not only the company’s culture that is fake, but this person is too.
Attend a Recruitment Application
It’s one of the best way to spot the differences between a “culture, race, religion, sexual diversity and orientation” is marked down as good in their culture and a “oh, s·he is Jehovah’s Witness, don’t hire him·her because they don’t like gay people”. They just said “religion”!…
Also you will spot bad questions like we talked about few months ago : 5 questions to avoid during a job interview as employer. Any of these questions should raise a warning in your head instantly.
Check Their Transparency
We talked about it a few months ago too, Don’t mix transparency and fake opacity. Filtering good events to pretend to share transparent data is not transparent, removing someone from the company timeline without noticing it publicly is not.
Also, even if data are online, try to find the real data out there, a difference can exists, specially when we talk about salaries. Sharing real salaries is not easy, but sharing a sheet with fake ones is so easy.
Do they also share fails or just success? Do they separate from a teammate without mentioning it anywhere? Is this transparent? Is it a lie? Do they fake their numbers?
When you write a company culture, don’t try to invent a list that you can’t even apply yourself.
For example don’t say “Be fair with team” and then fire a teammate a morning like shit without any warning. Or pay a salary more to a man than to a woman just because the man has negotiate his salary better than the woman at first. Is this a part of your culture for real? Is this “fair” for you?
Another example? Don’t say “you have more liberty with us”, “you can work whenever your want”, “the time does not count but only the tasks done.” and ask everyone to clearly write down a “hello” and “bye” every time they enter your chat, just to tag them as “present” or not, this is not liberty, this is time monitoring.
Do they cheat?
We already talked about cheat with fake data reports, fake transparency, but what about cheating with commercial deception? Imagine a company changing its prices the day before a discount operation and then after, back on the old pricing without any explanation? What about the one who use a discount banner saying “2 days left” but it’s still there after 5? Or gone the day after? It’s clearly a commercial cheat, a totally disrespect to their actual and future customers, your trust should not be given to that kind of companies. Don’t add “users are important” in your culture if you do that.
Don’t hesitate to ask employees questions about the company. If they’re feeling good with it, they will speak in a good way about it, if not, they just won’t, so you’ll spot the weakness.
History moment, a day I asked to an fired employee of a company if she was still ok with them, she said yes at first, but then, she said that the company owe her some money that the CEO didn’t want to give back. So she threatened them with a 4 pages fake lawyer postal mail, the money was back in one week!
Is this part of a culture company to try to steal money from the employees? I hope not!
Finally Don’t Try to Create a Company Culture
This may seem counterintuitive, but you really can’t create your culture. Culture has to be seeded, then nurture it and help it grow. It is not possible to just create something just because you write it down it does not work like that. Be real and good, stop just trying to look real and good.