Choose an Employer That Meets Your Social Needs

As you evaluate potential employers, think about whether they offer the level of social interaction you enjoy at work.

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As you look for the right job, don’t forget to consider your social needs. Think about how much socializing and human interaction you’d like at work, and what types of socializing you enjoy. How important is it to work at a company that puts a premium on talent and intellectual property versus one that values capital investments? How much social interaction do you need to feel appreciated and valued as an employee?

As you consider different potential employers, compare your needs with the level of human capital appreciation they offer. Which companies value sociability?

Here are some clues to help you find an employer that lies within your range on the social-needs scale:

Highly Social Companies

Companies at this end of the scale are heavily committed to creating a culture that focuses on nurturing innovation as well as creativity. These companies generate the most value from intellectual property. If you enjoy a high level of social interaction at work, consider consumer-driven technology companies, bio-technology companies, and entertainment companies.

[See 15 Ways Good Bosses Keep Their Best Employees.]

Mid-Range Social Companies

Companies that fall in the middle of the scale have a culture that values both people and services. They look for employees who can open doors to business opportunities and interact directly with end-users to create revenue. These companies also value training and strive to create a service-oriented culture. Businesses in this category include restaurants, retail establishments, medical-service providers and those in the hospitality industry.

If you enjoy a medium level of sociability, you may also consider manufacturing companies that have high marketing and sales needs. For example, try working for a company that focuses on fast-moving consumer goods, products that are quickly transported to stores and quickly bought by consumers.

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Low Social Companies

These companies focus on capital investments, factories and machinery. They include oil companies, auto manufacturers, and construction-equipment companies. Try these options if you prefer to keep socializing at work to a minimum.

Whatever your social needs, consider them as you think about which companies would be a good fit for you. Take the time to evaluate each company’s commitment to training, employee development, culture creation and management skills. No matter how good the job description looks, if a potential employer doesn’t match your social needs, it’s not the right move for you.

Rusty Rueff, director and career expert for jobs and career website Glassdoor.com has been a CEO, led HR in global companies and is co-author of Talent Force: A New Manifesto for the Human Side of Business.

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