Company culture reminds me of buying clothes.
Sometimes you buy a shirt or pants without trying them on—maybe you bought the garment online—and even though it looks good, it just doesn’t fit. You try to make it work because you like how it looks on the hanger, but no matter what you do it just doesn’t feel right or look right when you wear it.
That’s company culture for many people. A lot of times, we pick a place based on a certain set of information. Maybe you read about the company online, you saw pictures, or you even had a friend tell you amazing things about the place.
Once you’re there, though, something feels off.
Here are a few observations about company culture:
- Every company has a culture and values, whether or not they’ve articulated them. As ownership goes, the company goes.
- There is no right and no wrong when it comes to culture, and there is no right and no wrong as to what the owners want out of their business. (Unless there is illegal or unethical behavior, that is.)
- Therefore, some people fit and some people don’t.
- There are things about people—and therefore things about companies—that can change. If people don’t change, companies won’t change. However, the world will definitely change around them.
Those points could explain why you might not feel right where you are—or why you someone else loves it there and you don’t. Maybe you used to really like it there, and now you don’t.
All this is OK; it’s normal. Sometimes you just don’t fit the company culture—or it doesn’t fit you.
A version of this article first appeared on iMediaConnection.