Are you hiring for a values fit?

Usually, when the need for a new hire arises, it’s because there’s a gap in your organisation. You might have found yourself with too much work for your current number of employees or perhaps someone has moved on in their career, leaving you with a space to fill. Whatever the reason, managers are often looking for someone with a certain set of skills to fill that gap. If you’re looking to hire and want to find the right people maybe it’s time to shift your mindset slightly and start focusing on some other things in the hiring process.

Is it really so hard to find good people?

Have you ever heard a manager lamenting over the apparent lack of ‘good people’ out there to hire? It’s far too common amongst leaders and the worst part is that it’s not true. Good people are out there – it’s just that so many managers are hiring for skills alone, rather than on a combination of skills and value fit. The secret to finding all these good people might be a simple adjustment in your approach to hiring.

Employees already have this mindset – you might have the salary and benefits they’re looking for but if they get a taste of your organisation’s culture and they don’t like it, they are extremely likely to either not take the position in the first place or leave soon after starting. According to a study by AHRI, positive relationships with colleagues is the #1 reason people stay in a role while 43% of workplaces are actively investing in their culture to retain employees.

Why does it matter if employees fit into your culture?

The importance of culture fit has really been ramped up in recent times and many people associate the idea with the new generation coming through the workforce – too many people write off the concept as something that only millennials care about, but they couldn’t be further from the truth. Despite the fact that it’s not a new idea, belonging in any environment is a need common to all humans.

  • Employees who fit into the culture are more likely to be accepted by the rest of the team quickly, in addition to feeling as though they belong.
  • Feeling comfortable in their surroundings is the quickest way for anyone to begin contributing confidently in team settings.
  • Fitting in culturally also creates happier employees, more likely to stick around and become loyal employees.
  • The longer your employees stick around, the more they’ll learn and develop their skills.

So, how can you make sure you hire the right people?

There are incredible benefits when an employee fits into the culture at your organisation but it’s not quite as easy as hiring someone and then just hoping that the stars align for them to fit in. You need to be intentional before, during and after the hiring process:

  1. Know your values – Your organisation has values, but do you know them? If you don’t, it’s time to brush up on them and hire with them in mind.

  2. Make them public and clear – Have you got your values on your website? If you do, make sure you are pointing candidates towards that page. All potential employees should be able to see your company’s values clearly so that they know where you stand and how their own values fit with theirs.

  3. Openly talk about your values and the company’s in the interview. Ask questions that reveal their honest opinions on situations and scenarios that reflect your values. Know where they stand so there are no huge shocks later down the track.

  4. After they’re hired and successfully onboarded, don’t leave it there. Check in after a month or two to make sure they’re getting on just fine after the dust has settled and continue to check in as the months go by.

It’s time for managers all over the world to change their approach when it comes to hiring – instead of focusing solely on skills, focus on a mixture of skills and values. Remember, skills can always be taught but values are ingrained over time – if the skills are slightly lacking but the values are perfect, consider giving them the chance to develop their skills in your organisation.

If you’re ready to change your hiring mindset, People Make the Difference can help. To find out more, visit or call us on 0412 333 415. Our online leadership training videos start from $99 for a year’s access, with new video training added each quarter. Great value if you’re committed to growing your leadership potential.