Half of working Canadians have trouble fitting in at work: Poll

    New IPSOS Reid survey shows one in three feel dragged down by negative

    MISSISSAUGA, ON, Oct. 21 /CNW/ - A new poll by IPSOS Reid suggests that
half of working Canadians have trouble fitting in at work and one in three
find it difficult to concentrate at work because they are dragged down by a
negative atmosphere.
    "Workers aged 18 to 34 are much more likely (37 per cent) than those aged
35 to 54 (30 per cent) or those aged 55 or more (20 per cent) to believe
they're dragged down by a negative atmosphere at work," says Sean Simpson of
    The study also indicates that 50 per cent of working Canadians don't
think they always fit in well at work. More than one in 10 (12 per cent) say
they feel like an outsider, with 9 per cent saying they don't fit well 'within
their workplace's culture,' and another 3 per cent think they are complete
misfits, saying they 'hate' the culture and 'don't fit in at all.'
    "Younger workers are also more likely to be disappointed with their work
experience than those who are older," says Simpson. "Among those under 35,
more than a quarter (28 per cent) say their experience is worse than they
expected versus just 10 per cent of workers 55 and older."
    Gail Rieschi, president and CEO of HR services firm vpi Inc., says
employers should place a higher priority on hiring people who are a good match
with the corporate culture, as well as having the technical qualifications for
the job.
    "While most people are hired for their hard skills, a bad fit with the
corporate culture can often lead to dissatisfaction at work," says Rieschi.
"It is critical that employers pay close attention to how well potential
candidates will fit within the organization, not just their experience and

    Rieschi offers some advice to help employers hire people who will fit
within the organization.

    1.   Know your company's personality

    When employers know their business personality and organizational values,
they can better understand what kinds of people will work well within the
company. "The most effective way to identify your organizational personality
is to conduct an objective assessment, carried out by a third-party
evaluator," says Rieschi. "Employers can also do self-assessments by
developing a questionnaire that can be completed by employees at all levels as
well as by a sampling of clients." Questions should centre around decision
making processes, work routines, organizational procedures and dress code
among others. Once the questionnaires are completed, the responses can be used
to develop a working document that defines the company personality.

    2.   Determine employee suitability

    Once organizational values are clearly known, situational interview
questions designed to measure fit can be developed that are unique to the
organization. There are also many commercially available assessments that can
help identify job candidates' work values and work personality and measure
them against those of the organization. Work simulations and work trials
designed to identify work values, rather than just technical competency, can
also help the selection process.

    Rieschi says employers should pay close attention to how young people are
affected by a negative workplace given the large numbers of older workers
retiring in the next 10 years. "The battle for talent has already started and
it will only intensify in the coming years," says Rieschi. "Young people
entering the labour market will increasingly have many work options. To
attract and retain talent, employers must be attuned to their needs and
understand if they fit well within the organization."

    About vpi Inc.

    vpi Inc. is a leader in employment facilitation services with a
comprehensive range of results-focused solutions to maximize employee
productivity, manage disability claims and assist individuals find employment.
Founded in 1988, vpi is one of the fastest expanding companies of its kind
with 32 offices, and more than 180 full-time skilled experienced professionals
across Ontario. The company has a strong record of effectiveness including
98 percent client satisfaction with all employee selection services; 95 per
cent of outplaced clients achieving new employment within 12 weeks and 90 per
cent of disabled workers successfully reinstated. For more information, visit

    About the survey:

    The online poll was conducted by IPSOS Reid from August 21 to August 26
among 1,013 Canadians, of which 540 were currently employed. An unweighted
probability sample of this size, with a 100% response rate, would have an
estimated margin of error of +/- 3.1 percentage points, 19 times out of 20,
for the entire sample, and +/- 4.5%, 19 times out of 20, for the sample of

For further information:

For further information: Josh Turner, Trillium Corporate Communications
Inc., (416) 322-3030 ext. 232, Cell: (647) 828-0862, josh@trilliumpr.com

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