How to Evaluate An Organization for Cultural Match

How to Evaluate An Organization for Cultural Match

All of your hard work has paid off—you are about to exit your training and land your first professional position. Or, maybe you are ready for a change and you are considering other organizations. Either way, you’ve identified your list of opportunities and interviews are scheduled. What’s next?


A survey conducted by Physician Wellness Services revealed that cultural fit was the top controllable cause of voluntary physician departures. To that end, you must focus on the intangibles that can make or break a well-matched position—you must interview the organization, just as they are interviewing you.  Below are some items to consider during your interview process to determine if the position will be a mutually rewarding one.


  • Leadership Structure/Opportunities: Are there opportunities for you to hold leadership positions within your department if that is important to you? Do you know which administrator to contact if there is a problem that must be addressed? Assess the leadership hierarchy and structure to determine if it would work for you.
  • Community: Is there a sense of organizational pride and community? Are there opportunities for physicians, staff, and families to get together for team building? Is the organization involved in the community it serves? If you are interested in a workplace being more than a place where you go to work, you must ask the right questions.
  • Accountability/Productivity: How will you be held accountable for reaching goals? How will your productivity be measured? Will this system evolve as you evolve with the organization? A clear understanding of how performance is assessed and measured is important.
  • Size: Are you more comfortable in a large, multi-facility setting or a smaller, one facility atmosphere? In which setting will you be more likely to thrive? How will your individual preferences work within this facility’s structure?
  • Patient Base/Care Standards: Does the patient base the facility attracts meet the needs of your goals and priorities? Does the facility’s perception of care mesh with your standards of patient care?
  • Team vs. Individual: Are there opportunities for collaboration? Are teamwork goals set and incentivized? Do you perform better autonomously or in a group setting?
  • Support: Are there mentorship opportunities or will you be expected to hit the ground running? What onboarding support is put into place for new hires to help them transition into the new workplace and are you comfortable with those resources?
  • Reviews/Feedback: How are reviews conducted? How frequently? How is constructive criticism communicated and what processes are in place to ensure new hires are remediating deficits?
  • Formal/Casual: Are conversations formal or casual? Is everyone at their most professional at all times or do you staff sharing a laugh? In which atmosphere will you be most comfortable—and productive?


Bottom line

You must know yourself—and the organization—well to make an informed employment decision. By determining what you are looking for in an organizational culture and asking the right questions to assess if the opportunities presented will meet your needs, you will set yourself up for a prudent—and productive—career placement.

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