If you work with the Vortechs Group we do a great job of finding a match based on the qualifications and skills you’ve provided us, but often the dynamics of your office have as much to do with the right culture fit as the qualifications do. We’re only as good as the information you convey and sometimes talking about the ideal cultural fit is difficult to put into words. Often you’re the best person to make that call. Here are a few ways you can be confident in your selection:
Be a student of observation. Watch how the candidate relates to others when s/he’s not “on.” Stage an interruption, watch them in the holding area, walk them around the department and watch how they interact with others. Networking and first impressions are a large part of working in intellectual property licensing. If they can’t immediately make a good impression, even under nerve-wracking conditions, you might want to pass.
When you introduce them to the team, give them a moment alone. Take a phone call, return a message. Give them some time to adjust to one another and then get feedback from the group later.
Ask “What If?” Questions
Reading from a list of traditional interview questions is not a way to ascertain cultural fit. Instead ask open-ended questions that reflect your culture. If you pride yourselves on creativity, ask questions that help that trait surface. If your culture is very serious, don’t ask off-the-wall humorous questions. Your questions should give you the answers you’re looking for and your candidate an insight into what it would be like working in your department.
Know Your Intentions
Often when you lead a department, you are either the team you want to be or you are focused on becoming one. Be honest with yourself as you’re interviewing. Are you looking for candidates who are an ideal fit for who you currently or are you hiring for you want to be?
Note that if you are hiring for who you want to be there may be some initial friction between your new hire and the team as that plays out.
Culture fit is one of the most important things to look at in a candidate. Skills can be taught but personality and the ability to build relationships with the current crew you have is essential to everyone’s success.