BY MELISSA BURNS
We all know that it’s not easy to choose the right company to work for, especially when you’re just starting out and making your first forays into the workforce. As I’m sure you’ve heard, there have been plenty of times when someone has charged ahead and taken a position at the first company that offers one, only to immediately regret their decision of signing that contract once the honeymoon period is over.
Something important to keep in mind before venturing out into the world is that being offered a job doesn’t mean that you have to take it. The smart way to go about it would be to do your research and find out exactly what kind of company you’re committing to.
So, what are some of the things to look out for in a company that could potentially employ you? Below is a list of tips that should help you find your way to the best fit for you.
Public image: One of the first things you need to do is to research the company’s public image to get at least an idea of what kind of business you would be committing yourself to. If you like the look of their communication efforts and marketing campaigns, you’re headed in the right direction.
Nose around for a bit on the company’s website; check out the mission and vision. Have a look at their social media pages and gather as much information as you can that’s available for the public.
You would be surprised at just how much you can learn about a company this way.
Work environment: This is a biggie that tends to fall through the cracks sometimes. You have to be sure to check into the work environment of the company. You will be spending most of your days at the office, after all, so it’s really important that the environment is somewhere you feel comfortable but challenged at the same time.
This, of course, means different things to different people, so you have to know which environments suits you best beforehand. Is it somewhere fast-paced where you go from one challenge to the next? Or do you prefer a quiet ambiance where you can do your best thinking?
A good way to find out what the work environment is like in a company is to observe the people working there as much as you are able. You will probably have the chance to do so during the interviewing process.
Wellness programs: Another great way to find out if a company is going to value you as their employee is if there are wellness programs put in place. If you’re not familiar with these programs, their purpose is to instill healthy behaviors in employees by offering incentives. These incentives vary from discounted gym memberships, paid time off, access to nutritionists, etc.
If a company has one of these programs, you know that they at least consider their employees’ welfare and health.
Career growth opportunity: Another really important thing to keep in mind when choosing the right company is whether they are more likely to promote their employees when looking to fill a position, or they search for someone outside of it.
This is something to keep in mind because when a company chooses to promote their employees, they will more than likely offer training courses and such to capacitate them. Meaning a lot of opportunities for growth.
The best company to work for, in my experience, is the one that values you as an employee and doesn’t see you as just another cog in the machine. Of course, you have to make yourself valuable to the company as a working relationship is not a one-way street.
Melissa Burns graduated from the faculty of Journalism of Iowa State University. Nowadays she is an entrepreneur and independent journalist. Follow her @melissaaburns or contact at firstname.lastname@example.org