“Around here, however, we don’t look backwards
for very long. We keep moving forward, opening up new doors
and doing new things, because we’re curious … and
curiosity keeps leading us down new paths.”
—Walt Disney Company
I will never forget the day the “ideal work environment” changed. I was interviewing candidates for a position at JB Training Solutions in 2008. We were looking for a bright, hard-working recent college graduate to join our team. We are not a Leo Burnett when it comes to size or glamour, so I would ask “What is your ideal work environment?” to understand what the candidate was seeking. If a candidate answered along the lines of “fast-paced, large company,” then I knew the position would not be a good fit.
The new answers to this question jolted me, just like the interview of the candidate from Princeton who worked on a leaderless team. I interviewed six candidates from six different schools, and interestingly I received a slightly different version of the same answer from everyone. Now, I also travel to college campuses across the country to advise students on getting a great job and excelling in the workplace. Being tapped into these universities and their career centers, I knew that this answer wasn’t simply the answer “du jour.”
Every single person of whom I asked this question gave an answer along the lines of, “I want to work in an environment where I can contribute to meaningful work, grow and develop, and make an impact at