People often talk about searching for their dream job or career, but what about your dream workplace? For every individual, there's a company out there that's a perfect cultural fit based on his or her personality, and finding that fit is important: Sometimes your work environment can affect your job satisfaction more than your day-to-day tasks.
"There is a substantial correlation between good cultural fit and job satisfaction," said Kerry Schofield, whose company Good.Co matches employees and employers based on personality. "A better fit leads to greater satisfaction, more engagement with the organization, and greater commitment to the organization and job."
Finding the perfect workplace match for you requires really figuring out your individual personality and work style, Schofield said. She outlined the following four steps to help job seekers find their workplace "soul mate." [3 Keys to Employee Happiness at Work]
List your strengths and weaknesses. Create a list of the skills, experience, roles, perspective and natural gifts you have to offer. Don't forget to include your weaknesses. If you're someone that hates being around people, list it — it's important to be honest with yourself.
Create a profile of your perfect workplace. Don't focus on things like salary and benefits: Instead, focus on the overall culture and environment of your ideal workplace. What type of people would you like to work with? What kind of manager would you like to have? What aspects of your workplace will make you feel energized? What would your ideal work space look like?
Research companies that match your profile. Look into a company's history, filter through customer reviews, and even check out those individuals you know you'd be working with on LinkedIn, Facebook or Twitter. What are they really like? What does the firm value and what kind of culture are they fostering? Will you actually fit in with the company culture and be happy there? These questions will help you make an informed decision whether to apply.Having done your homework will also make you a more attractive candidate: Companies love it when you can demonstrate that you've taken the time to get to know what they're all about.
- Narrow down your list and reach out to your top companies. If you've found the company of your dreams, take initiative. Send your résumé directly to human resources and include a letter expressing your interest in the company, focusing on specific details. For example, you could say, "I'm a huge fan of the work you did for XYZ, and after doing further research into your culture and taking note of your impressive work with Charity X, I would love the opportunity to chat with you about any openings you may have. Would you be open to meeting me for coffee sometime next week?" There's a good chance that the hiring manager will be impressed with your take-charge attitude and enthusiasm, and perhaps even find a spot for you within the company.
If your perfect workplace doesn't have any openings, don't give up hope. Taking the time to reach out and send in your résumé means the company will have your information on-hand for consideration, Schofield said. It never hurts to follow up, either: Stay in touch with your contact at the company, and you might find that there's an opening in the future.
Originally published on Business News Daily.