We spend a lot of time here at Evolved Metrics talking about the different values that manifest inside organizations. Our clients often come to us with a people or process-related issue or opportunity that, when diagnosed, turns out to be a values-related question. Why aren’t my people accountable? How do I develop critical thinking amongst my staff? How do we digitally transform our business post-pandemic? The fact of the matter is that so much of what works and what doesn’t always comes back to values — specifically core values. Today we’d like to share why developing your company’s core values can generate superior results.
Core values are the things we believe are fundamental and that drive our motivations, decisions, and actions. These beliefs are deeply held and determine the character that we are known for and our reputation. They are often wrapped in the cloak of bold words such as integrity or respect or collaboration, which mean very different things to different people.
While individual people have core values, companies have core values too. The sum total of the individual actions, decisions, and behaviours of its people determines the company’s values. Many companies will write values statements and put them on the wall, but how do they actually treat their staff? Their customers and suppliers? Their partners and competitors?
When there is alignment between the professed values and the lived behaviours of a company’s day-to-day operations, the people’s experience can be magical. When the brand promises that customer service is a top priority, and a customer experiences that in reality, they become a raving fan. When a Hiring Manager tells a new hire that the company puts employees first and the employee experiences it for themselves, they won’t want to leave.
Leadership and management need to recognize their role in the stewardship of the company’s core values. Leaders must set the tone of the organizational culture and behave in ways that are consistent with who the company wants to be. Breaches of core values need to be taken seriously and weighted accordingly. When a problem touches a core value, it can quickly and disproportionately affect the business. You might even need to fire a customer or two for behaving in ways that don’t align with your values. We encourage our clients to be ruthless in applying their core values because that’s how they will create competitive advantages for their businesses. It’s okay to fire that client – the revenue isn’t worth it if it compromises who and what you are.
Be sure to take the time to work with your team and define what your core values are and what they mean to you. Come up with examples of what your values do and don’t look like and discuss what your people should do when values conflict with each other. By leaning into these discussions and continuing to have them as the business moves forward, a culture of those values will deepen, and superior results will follow.
We’d love to help you turn your core values into results. Contact us here if you’d like to schedule a complimentary culture assessment with our team.