Want a Positive Work Culture? 12 Questions for Your Next Interview
Forty eight million people quit their jobs in 2021. That’s up over 100% since the beginning of the Covid-19 pandemic.
- 34% of employees are engaged
- 55% of employees are planning to look for new jobs
Why are people leaving their jobs?
The top five reasons, according to a January 2022 MIT Sloan Management Review study are:
- Toxic work culture
- Job insecurity and reorganization
- High levels of innovation driving rapid change
- Failure to recognize performance
- Poor response to covid
The pandemic has revealed issues that many organizations never knew were important, and for some organizations, it’s exposed gaps in company culture that should have been addressed long before Covid. Regardless, for those organizations who want to attract and retain top talent, these issues must be addressed.
What’s the cure for the Great Resignation?
According to research reported by CEO Magazine, these factors can help attract and retain top talent, while cultivating and nourishing a compassionate and positive work culture.
- Compassionate leadership
- Empathy and understanding
- Focus on employee needs and balance
- Clear communication
- Healthy, positive conflict (vs. Drama). Here are five signs you are working with a drama queen (and five things you can do to diffuse the drama.
- Safe, inclusive work environments
Are you one of those people who are looking to work for an organization with a more compassionate and positive work culture? If so, it’s important to assess whether the organization and their leaders are operating with a Compassion Mindset®.
What is The Compassion Mindset?
Compassion is the practice of demonstrating that people are valuable, capable, and responsible in every interaction.
Organizations with a Compassion Mindset culture will demonstrate compassionate leadership in their interactions as well as having a positive work culture embedded in their systems and processes.
The Compassion Mindset has three switches. These switches represent our attitudes towards ourselves and others around value, capability, and responsibility. When the switches are on in a positive work culture, behaviors and practices will lead to connection, engagement, and innovation. When the switches are off, behaviors and practices will lead to disconnection, division and distress.
Do you want to work for an organization with a more compassionate and positive work culture? Here are some interview questions you can ask to assess whether the company you are looking at has their Compassion Mindset switches on.
People are Worthwhile
When the switch is on in a positive work culture, people are treated as innately valuable and have dignity, so we believe in them, support them, and give them the benefit of the doubt. When the switch is off, we believe that a person’s value is conditional. Explore this with questions like:
- Describe a time when you believed in someone who didn’t believe in themselves and how that impacted their performance.
- Describe how you deal with employees who are experiencing emotional struggles, e.g. scared, anxious, or angry.
- Describe a time when a leader got vulnerable with their employees or team.
- Describe how your organization creates a safe emotional space for your employees.
People are Capable
When the switch is on in a positive work culture, companies and their leaders believe there is opportunity for growth, and they assist people in becoming more capable. When the switch is off, they see limitations and barriers, and often jump in to solve the problem without embracing the learning opportunity in failure, which only reinforces dependency. Try these interview questions:
- Describe how you help employees rise to their potential.
- How do you approach failures and mistakes?
- Share an example of how your company encourages growth and learning in a work environment.
People are Responsible
When the switch is on in a positive work culture, leaders believe that regardless of what happened in the past, there is shared responsibility for what happens next, so they encourage ownership. When the switch is off, they try to isolate responsibility and point fingers. These questions can help you determine whether this switch is on or off.
- Describe how you deal with employee complaints and you help them take responsibility for finding a solution.
- How are personal and professional boundaries negotiated?
- What is your philosophy on individual vs group accountability?
- How do leaders deal with their own mistakes?
- Describe an example of how leaders approach difficult conversations.
Use these questions to help gauge if your next, or even your current job, has a positive work culture.