When you walked through the office you got the creeps — and you hadn’t been interviewed for the job yet! Being fair-minded you decided to give the company the benefit of the doubt. In another two interviews you felt the same bad vibe. Should you accept what seems a reasonable offer or run for the hills?
Based on 37 years experience, run! You are allergic to something in the environment, the organizational culture. You could torture yourself trying to figure out what or you can recognize that you gut is screaming at you and pass the job. So far we’re in the land of witchcraft and out of the land of logic. Actually, what you experienced is all of your past experience filtered through you intuition. If you spent the time you could surface the clues you got that you wouldn’t be successful in that environment. Let’s make this easier. Here are some of the clues you may have gotten.
1. The poeple wandering around were not like you in any way. They could have seemed older, younger, stressed, comatose. They negatively impressed you. You saw people who were clearly miserable.
2. The physical environment was uncongenial. I have clients who’ve reacted sharply to drabness, shabbiness, or too much luxury.
3. The noise or lack thereof bothered people.
4. There was no energy. People moved very sowly as if in a trance.
5. Loud noises, people shouting and running around for no obvious reason. Drama ruled.
You know that every office has a core of craziness based on top management. The trick is to ‘interview” the environment to be sure it’s a craziness you can live and work with. The perfect job in the wrong environment is as lethal as vice versa.
The worst cultural mismatches I’ve seen — and the most painful — are between those who need structure where chaos reigns and the chaos is called “casualness.” Never consider a job offer untill you’ve talked culture and work style with former employees.