Core Values: Who Are You?
The term “core values” sounds like one of those buzzwords that go in and out of popularity, doesn’t it? But core values are actually really important for any founder to develop as they create their brand. Core values are the principles that bind the organization together, from the front desk receptionist all the way up to the C-Suite. The attitude and conduct of employees should always represent the core values of any business.
How to Choose Core Values
Remember that core values are the ethical standards of an organization and not the purpose of the business. Mission statements are calls to action, commanding goals. Core values, on the other hand, are usually a list of traits that should embody all activities of the company, no matter the role. Think about the kinds of characteristics you admire, and set them down in a list. What is important in your business, and what is special about working there?
What if you get stuck trying to come up with these values? First, think about what sets you apart from other companies and your competition. Is customer service the top priority? Or do you offer the best value in town? Think about the things that make your business unique, and come up with a core value from there.
Next, think about why employees would want to work for your business. Maybe the culture of your company is different. How? Are you a start-up with flexible hours? Or is networking and team-building a more important component? What kind of feelings do you want your employees to have about the company? Thinking of the ‘vibe’ you want to have will help you define the values you want for your company.
Encourage your team to help you with this process. It should be a collective and collaborative process, rather than a command. Try to come up with at least five core values for your business. They should be powerful words or short but memorable phrases. After all, the values won’t be any good if your colleagues can’t remember them. Each employee should know what that word means for your organization. Incorporate these core values into your marketing materials, internal memos, and employee handbooks. Some examples are “Integrity,” “Adaptability,” and “Embrace the Adventure.” Make sense?
It all starts with core values…
Core values are important because they act as the binding force for your company. If everyone’s goals and attitudes are aligned, your business will be more successful. They give employees and executives a drive to meet the company’s objectives and fulfill the mission statement. They provide a backdrop to all aspects of the company, including drafting job descriptions for potential employees. If you need help incorporating your values into job descriptions, get in touch with us.