What is Your Ideal Work Environment?
You've definitely been asked this in an interview and it's something you absolutely need to know if you're trying to build career success. So what is your dream workplace?
Outside of being able to describe it in an interview setting, you probably haven't put a lot of thought into it - and even then you've probably just taken the bad advice to describe the company that you're interviewing with.
Having an ideal work environment answer is one of the critical elements of career success, and it's one that far too many professionals neglect.
To help you discover where you should work, I have five questions to ask you today to help you not just nail the interview question, but to truly know where you will thrive.
What is your ideal working location?
This sounds really obvious, but it's something that a lot of people either overlook, or mis-evaluate.
You probably already know, if you're an office person, or if the thought of having to work in an office for eight hours a day and be chained to your desk makes you want to pull off your skin. But one thing that most people don't actually consider is the ability to work on-site versus the ability to work remote.
And if they want to work on-site, what are the important qualities for their working space for them to be able to thrive?
It's interesting, I actually spent the vast majority of my career in the tech industry. And once upon a time ago, working from home was a really big trend, it was one of the biggest assets that every company needed to offer in order to attract the best talent. However, in the past few years, there actually seems to be a trend in the opposite direction. A lot of big companies and small companies in tech alike have decided that being on-site is an absolute mission critical element for their employees, and they now require it outside of extreme circumstances.
When you're considering an opportunity or a work environment you need to figure out which one is actually best for you.
I know in theory that working from home sounds awesome. You got to work in your pajamas and watch your stories while you work. But if that's actually your attitude, that's a great indicator that working from home is not for you.
Similarly, there is a trend towards open office spaces. And if you find open office spaces to be really distracting, that might be something that you want to consider when you're considering joining a new company, if that is the setting that there is. On the other hand, you may find that cubicles are your own personal hell.
No matter what though, as you consider the different settings and locations that you could potentially work in, there is one thing that I really want you to be clear on.
You need to differentiate between what is great for you in theory, and what is great for you in practice.
You can simplify this by defining if you do your best work in an office or your best work remote and go from there into question two...
What is the Company's Culture & Values?
Really what I'm saying is considering the company values.If you've already created your professional mission statement and gone through the value discovery process you're ahead of the game.
Armed with your values, it's important for you to align those with the values of the company that you are potentially joining.
For example, if you value risk-taking and adventure, working for a highly analytical and methodical company is probably not going to be the place that you're going to be able to do your best work and be super appreciated.
If you haven't already gone through the practice of uncovering your values, thinking about the qualities that make you thrive. What's really important to you that you want to have in common with your colleagues.
For example, does kindness make your heart sing? Are you dependent on being in a transparent environment? Is tenacity something that you really value in yourself and your colleagues? Knowing what your values are and how they align with the company that you are potentially goin