How to set appropriate and sustainable company values?
The company’s values undoubtedly help not only in everyday life, but in raising general employee satisfaction, and also in the development of the company. Nevertheless, there are so many different values to choose from as your own. By determining the values of your company, it is possible to better define the internal culture – your mission, vision and reason to exist as a company, in addition to the products or services offered. Learn the best ways to define company values!
Define the main features that characterize your culture
The first step in defining a company’s values is to define a list of key features that accurately reflect the company’s culture. For example, if the culture of your company were a person, how would you describe its personality? Whether brand-new or long-standing, you should definitely come up with at least a few words and traits that describe your business.
When defining the company’s culture, it is important to take into account the views of all employees, as well as to hear and combine their interests and understanding of the company’s culture in different groups. This group should be representative of all areas of your company and should include employees at all levels, not only senior management and team leaders, but also lower-level executives, product developers, customer service representatives and even part-time employees or trainees. Consider inviting clients or employees from partner organizations who have worked with you and know your business to this group.
Once you’ve set up a group that knows the company well to find out what the company’s culture really is right now, it’s possible to have a ‘brainstorming’ session, where everyone has a chance to express their thoughts. Ask different creative questions, such as “If the company’s culture were human, what would that person be like?”, “Which celebrity does your company remind you the most?”. The most important aspect of all these questions is the answer to the question “why?”. After the “brainstorming” session, compile a list of the most frequently repeated answers, highlighting not only adjectives but also phrases and descriptions that describe your company’s culture. By looking at this list, it is now possible to define the company’s culture in order to set values for it.
Based on the company’s cultural characteristics, set the company’s core values
Once you have compiled a description of the company’s culture in the list, it is possible to set the company’s core values based on it. Once nominated, you can “test” them among existing employees by asking them for feedback – whether they think these values are in line with the company or, if they aren’t at the moment, see them as potentially good for the company’s future development.
By understanding which core values resonate most among employees, they can be put forward as core company values. No matter how many values are initially set, it’s best to narrow down the list to about 5-10 values that most vividly describe your company’s culture or preferred culture. It must be remembered that these are core values – they do not fully describe the company, but are the main pillars on which the company’s culture will be based in the future.
Introduce the company’s values to every employee
Once the company’s values have been defined, the last and most important step is to introduce each employee to them. Although values should be based on the company’s existing culture, employees should explain the importance of each value in the company’s operations – how this value relates to cooperation with colleagues, partners and customers, and how it will contribute to the company.
In order to introduce employees to the company’s values, it is possible to create a thematic event or series of events that bring the company’s new values to life. Additionally, it could also be helpful to create various activities or make a video that clearly shows how the values will be expressed in everyday work.
Share your values with the world
Once the employees are acquainted and already operate on a daily basis, based on the company’s values, they should be introduced to others. Tell your customers about them, show the company’s main values on social media. Share them with potential customers and potential new employees, introducing them to the company’s vision.
Be proud of your core values: they reflect the company’s culture. It is the values that make each company special, regardless of the services provided or products offered. Values build a company’s reputation – successfully implemented in the company’s daily life, these are qualities that everyone will associate with the company and can serve as a reason for why customers choose your company, for why partners are happy to work with you, and for potential employees to apply for vacancies in your company.