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Determining your company values

When starting your business, it’s crucial to identify the core values your company upholds. This decision can ultimately determine your success.

A company’s core values refer to a set of principles and beliefs that drives your business and dictate how it behaves. It can impact the relationships within the company as well as relationships with customers and investors. 

These values should be practised and reflected in every level of operation within the business. They will determine how the public perceives your business and will become the differentiating factor between your company and its competitors. 

Core values are important because they can have an impact on the company’s employees and customers. 

Effects on your employees 

Having a clear set of values can help employees make decisions that achieve your company’s mission. It provides them with guidance on the appropriate course of action.  

These values can also boost employee morale. Employees are usually more motivated to work for companies that share their values. 

They can also help attract the best talent as they provide prospective employees with an idea of what it’s like to work in your company. This is because a company’s core values determine its culture and work environment. Making these values clear at the recruitment stage can help you hire the right people by attracting those that share the same values. This ensures that your hires are a good cultural fit for your business and would likely stay with your business in the long run.

Effect on your company’s public image

Through your company values, your potential customers and investors can gain a better understanding of what your business is about, its mission and what it stands for. A strong set of company values makes your business more appealing to potential customers and investors that share the same beliefs. This, in turn, fosters brand loyalty.

1. Consult your employees

Form a small team with other founders, CEOs and key employees to collectively identify traits that describe the company or that you’d like adopted throughout the company. 

A list of all the suggestions should be made.

2. Define your key core values by discussing with your team

You should continue discussing with your group to see which values resonate with them the most. Particular consideration should be given to qualities that have been raised more than once. 

In picking out which beliefs and principles to uphold, you should be mindful of: 

  • the relevance of the traits to your business and its mission - they should not be generic ideals

  • the costs associated with upholding these values - they should be upheld at all times, not only when it’s economical to do so

  • the fact that actions must be taken to realise these values for them to be effective 

After you’ve established your core values, you must share them with your employees and the public. 

When announcing these values to your employees, you should think about ways to market them. You can:

  • use acronyms to make the values more memorable

  • demonstrate how these values can be practically implemented in employees’ daily activities 

  • create posters to remind your employees of the values 

  • make merchandises with the values printed on them

  • introduce a reward system for employees who embody the values in their daily operation

To be effective, your core values must also be integrated into any employee-related processes such as recruitment, wellbeing and dismissal

Be sure to share your values with the public. This can be done by publishing them on your company’s website through a mission statement and publicising them on social media.

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