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Woman Says She Was Fired Because She Wasn't A 'Culture Fit,' Sparking Debate On How Personality Trumps Skills In The Workforce

Photo: @justinecvdm / TikTok 
Woman, workplace, culture fit

When applying for jobs, most people would assume that skills and prior experience would be a significant factor that recruiters would be analyzing. After all, some positions require at least some knowledge of the work environment and job title in order for it to be granted to a candidate. 

Nowadays, however, skills are not the only quality that recruiters are interested in. They want to ensure that their employees will not only do the work they are asked to but that they will fit into the work climate and mesh well with other workers.

One woman has sparked a debate regarding how personality trumps skills in the workplace after posting a TikTok video that has people sharing their opinions about what matters most in a job.

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The woman revealed that she was fired from her job because she wasn’t a ‘culture fit.’

Justine, a social media influencer who often posts about workplace tips and struggles, recently revealed that she was laid off from her job since she did not adapt well to her work environment. She only had the position for a month.

“When you get laid off after a month at a new job because you’re not a ‘culture fit,’ she wrote in the text overlay of her video as she lip-syncs the lyrics, “It doesn’t surprise me, do you really think that I could care? If you really don’t like me, find somebody else, there could be anyone else out there,” from the song “Jerk.”

Justine claims it “blows her mind” that there are companies that are hiring candidates based on their “cultural fit” over their skill set in her video’s caption. She is not the only employee who was let go from or quit a job due to this particular reason.



Other TikTok users shared their own similar experiences in the comments section.

“Not me leaving my job because I didn't want to change to fit into a new culture that was just gossip and drinking,” one user commented. “This just happened to me. I produced quality results and was praised by my colleagues but my direct boss didn’t like me questioning her,” another user revealed.

“I worked at an office with women that dressed differently than me and I made all my quotas but got let go after 90 days for not being the ‘right fit’” another user wrote.

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However, other users argued that work culture is a critical part of the job. 

“What blows me away is you don’t understand the need for both,” one user commented. 

“Skills can be trained, they’re a dime a dozen. You either fit in with the culture or you don’t,” another user pointed out. 

“Honestly every single positive hiring experience I've had was when I was hired ‘for the culture or personality fit’. Skills can be taught on the job,” another user shared.

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It is true that work culture and personality are becoming prioritized at a job over skills. 

78% of professionals from various industries agreed that personality is the most crucial factor when hiring candidates, with initial skillset being the least important. Job recruiters are looking for employees who will not only get the job done but will blend well with their cultures and values.

According to a study from LinkedIn, skills at a job can be learned and acquired in three months or less. Meanwhile, personality is something that is ingrained into a person and difficult to alter.

This provides an optimistic perspective for applicants who fear rejection from a job position due to lack of experience or skills, but have a strong personality that fits into the work environment’s standards.

A few personal traits that recruiters look for in applicants include a positive attitude, good communication, and someone who contributes effectively to a team.

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Megan Quinn is a writer at YourTango who covers entertainment and news, self, love, and relationships.