You hate your job. It blows the big one. There’s no culture, it makes you uncomfortable, and Janet from accounting is always whispering whatever behind your back. There are a whole list of red flags you kick yourself for ignoring during the interview. If you haven’t experienced this yet, here are a few red flags to look for before you accept a job you hate.
Is this a comfortable environment? Do they care about their employees comfort?
Cubicles are not a bad thing, they offer less distractions, allow for space personalization, and make it easy to connect with other employees without them distracting you. But if you spot rattling windows, moldy bathrooms (big health problem that’s easy to take care of!), or if the environment is not work conducive, then ask about about other options.
If the office is straight up terrible for productivity, there could be a good reason. Maybe everyone works from home? Or from a meeting room on their laptops. There may be other options available.
When these options are available they could be a sign that your employer cares about your comfort while getting work done, it can also be a sign that there isn’t a lot of face-to-face collaboration in the office. Your working environment has a huge impact on your happiness and the quality of work you deliver.
Before you accept a career, you should talk to someone who works there, someone angry looking is ideal; they might have more to say (or they might just have an angry face). Talking to someone who works there will give you some insight on employee retention, ability of work, and internal opportunity. Looking at current employee happiness is a good hint on if you’ll like it there. You can even look online at sites like Glassdoor or Indeed.
The building matters. You’ll flourish in a better physical environment. Pretty offices can increase your productivity by almost double! That means that something as easy as adding a water feature, some grass, a garden, or a little stream are good for your work. If the outside is comfortable and easy to walk around (or if there’s an indoor garden) it means that the business cares about their employee wellness and wants them to work in a beautiful place.
If you’re done with your interview, leave, and notice giant piles of litter outside and that the building is dying (and there are no future plans to move), it could be an indicator of bigger problems.
Look around the office, if you can, are there any groups of people that are fundamentally missing? If it’s a white collar office job, a distinct lack of fat people could mean a really great fitness program, or it could be a discriminatory hiring processes. Are there plenty of other women there and people of all colors? If there is some group of people missing, ask about it. Maybe there isn’t a lot of women in North Dakota, or there might be a lot of more Russian hackers. Looking at who's missing from the office helps you determine some of their company culture, if you can flourish here (or not!), and if this is somewhere that you will do well in.
If the office environment looks great, you’ve talked to people in the office and online, and they all love it there. If you're pretty sure that you’ll love it there and want to stay, make sure they are paying you money and benefits that make it worth your time. You are a treasure and a value, and while an internship is a great way to gain experience, it’s not worth giving away your time. When you go into an interview, if they try to get a clearance price on your time, this may not be the company for you. Because they don’t quite see the enormous value that they offer.
When looking for a job that you will have success in, there are a few red flags to look for. Talking to people there, looking at the building, working environment, and being paid appropriately will help you out. These are just the big red flags to look at, if there are more that you’re kicking yourself about, comment down below!
This is a guest post from Mary Grace. Mary is based out of the beautiful Boise, Idaho. She loves hiking, skiing, and examining human interactions. Comment down below, or tweet her @marmygrace with your questions or concerns.