Advertising

When you are interviewing somewhere new, what are things you look for/signs that it is a shitty work environment? So many places paint themselves so well until you’re hired & their true colors show🙄

likehelpfulfunny
Reaction Icon Like
Arrow Icon
works at

If it’s dead silent throughout the halls I think that’s a red flag 🚩

Reaction Icon Like
like
Arrow Icon

When they talk more about what the place COULD be rather than what it is

Reaction Icon Like
likesmarthelpful
Arrow Icon

This is a good one

Reaction Icon Like
Arrow Icon

Ask for a tour. See if/ how people are interacting. See how they react to whoever is interviewing you. See how people are acting in meeting rooms. Ask what kinds of things they do for agency culture. For example, my agency does two three big parties a year, but weekly creative meetings where we just shoot the shit and tell at each other about whether work is good or not, we have an open alcohol policy (essentially, act like an adult), we have quarterly Town Halls, internal awards, agency pot luck lunches, and much more. Ask who the loudest person in the office is. Ideally there's more than one and they have trouble picking between the two. If they don't have a loudest person, that's a red flag to me.

Reaction Icon Like
likeupliftingfunny
Arrow Icon

This sounds like BCW tbh (not a subtle brag - just that we do those things.)

Reaction Icon Like
like
Arrow Icon

Look at the work on the walls and the reel. Look at the shittiest piece they have. That’s what you’ll be making.

Reaction Icon Like
likesmartfunny
Arrow Icon

Lol but true

Reaction Icon Like
like
Arrow Icon

From recent experience, a place/interviewer who spends the bulk of the interview time wanting to know about you, but leaves minimal to no time for you to ask questions is a huge, monster 🚩 Employers need to start realizing that they are being evaluated just as much as the job candidate.

Reaction Icon Like
likesmarthelpful
Arrow Icon

It’s happened to me quite a bit, actually. The message it sends is, ‘you should consider it an honor just to be nominated’. Sorry, but that’s gonna be a no from me dawg.

Reaction Icon Like
like
Arrow Icon

Do people look happy? Do they complain when interviewing you? Does it sound like they’re trying to hard to convince you that they’re so awesome?

Reaction Icon Like
likehelpful
Arrow Icon

The admins and assistants can tell you everything you need to know if you can get them talking

Reaction Icon Like
likehelpful
Arrow Icon

“We’re like a family here” = they are dysfunctional and don’t respect boundaries. Run far, far away!

Reaction Icon Like
likefunny
Arrow Icon

I thought I came from a dysfunctional family, until I worked at several different family owned shops. They made my family look completely normal. The weirdest was the 40yr old bachelor who had a Principal Skinner type relationship with his mom. She would even take him to the doctor and he would call her “mother”.

Reaction Icon Like
Arrow Icon

Check the kitchen. Good coffee, snacks, multiple microwaves all indicate a company that cares about employees and has money to spend on non-necessities. If it’s a drip coffee pot and a plastic beige fridge from the ‘80s, run.

Reaction Icon Like
like
Arrow Icon

or maybe consider those Kind bars are what you get instead of actual employees benefits like paid time off/401K match/decent health coverage...

Reaction Icon Like
like
Arrow Icon

when they ask questions about culture fit and not questions related to the role. it generally indicates that the group likes drinking together but were not hired for their ability to do the job.

Reaction Icon Like
like
Arrow Icon

When you say culture fit you mean agencies ask interviewees questions? Like what?

Reaction Icon Like
Arrow Icon

If you ask them "what's your favorite part about working here?" it catches a surprising number of people off guard. If they totally fumble, it probably sucks. I also usually ask "what's work/life balance like here?" If they tell you it's great they're probably full of shit. It can be a good barometer for agency culture (honest folks or fueled by fear).

Reaction Icon Like
likesmart
Arrow Icon

I had one guy tell me he was trying to turn his agency and the next Droga5. Pretty obvious bait & switch for an agency that was desperate for anyone because they weren’t doing any good work. When they tell you that aspirations are bigger than anything logical, that’s a red flag.

Reaction Icon Like
like
Arrow Icon

This almost never works. Especially if it's an established agency. Maybe if you're employee #7, or something.

Reaction Icon Like
Arrow Icon

If they show up late to the interview and don't apologise or offer me water

Reaction Icon Like
likefunny
Arrow Icon

Anytime someone says “we’re a scrappy team.” Expect chaos and lack of direction.

Reaction Icon Like
like
Arrow Icon

I interviewed at a place a few years back and two of the people I met with told me how much they hated the place. The one girl said she was trying to get fired so she didn’t have to pay back her moving expenses. Needless to say, I passed on it.

Reaction Icon Like
like
Arrow Icon

You were lucky to find people open to talk about it with such honesty!

Reaction Icon Like
like
Arrow Icon

How they treat you during the interview process is a huge sign for me. Are they punctual or do they keep you waiting? How easy is it to schedule and get feedback? If they can’t treat the people they are “wooing” like humans, then they sure as hell don’t treat their employees well either...

Reaction Icon Like
like
Arrow Icon

I was forgotten in a conference room for so long I just eventually left 🙄

Reaction Icon Like
like
Arrow Icon

This happened to me too

Reaction Icon Like
Arrow Icon

Emails after work hours, no long term mid level employees, receptionist looking dead etc.

Reaction Icon Like
like
Arrow Icon

Community desks.

Reaction Icon Like
like
Arrow Icon

I like to ask what their favorite part of their agency is & then least favorite. If they give me a generic agency example rather than something more unique and realistic = 🚩

Reaction Icon Like
like
Arrow Icon

“What’s your favorite part of the agency?” “We wear a lot of hats.” What’s your least favorite part of the agency?” “We wear a lot of hats.”

Reaction Icon Like
likefunny
Arrow Icon

Related Posts

Best replacement for the Uber credit card? Got downgraded and looking for something similar to the old benefits.

like
Reaction Icon Like
Arrow Icon

What would happen if someone was interviewing for a role and accidentally passed gas, but otherwise crushed the interview? Has anyone experienced this before? No clue what I’d do as the interviewer

likefunny
Reaction Icon Like
Arrow Icon

*weekly post complaining about hiring discrimination against males*

likefunny
Reaction Icon Like
Arrow Icon

Delta Platinum members, what bonus do you choose? Very likely gifting Silver Status to my spouse.

like
Reaction Icon Like
Arrow Icon

I got a new role in Ohio. My SO is freaking out about the bedbug crisis there. Any tips of how to protect against bedbugs?

like
Reaction Icon Like
Arrow Icon

If anyone wants to join a boutique HR & Talent Advisory consulting firm, Kincentric is hiring for an Associate Partner role! Location doesn’t really matter, but preferably in IL, NY, or ATL.

like
Reaction Icon Like
Arrow Icon

Download the app for more exclusive discussions.