When we talk about core values, we are speaking about the ideals that represent a person’s or a company’s highest priorities, their foundation and belief systems to guide the way they operate. Many businesses have a set of core values that drive their mission and vision or vice versa.
The foundation of any business must be its core values. Before the first day of operations, a company’s core values should have already been decided. Quite frankly, it should be one of the key components written in the company’s business plan.
These core values dictate how the business operates on a day-to-day basis. It is necessary for companies to decide on core values as this will give structure and guidance to the company, especially when dealing with challenging situations.
Core values are used in businesses to determine resource allocation, company development, decision making, staff hiring and maintenance as well as how communication is disseminated throughout and outside of the business. Companies generally select ten or fewer core values by which they operate.
Some companies are known for having very good core values and using them to successfully operate. Companies such as 3M, Discover, Cox Automotive and Google. These companies have core values that not only speak to the way they do business but also the culture they foster within their organizations.
There are several core values that companies can choose from. In this article, we will zone in on eight common core values used by companies. At the end, there will be a list of others that you can choose from.
Eight Common Core Values for Workplaces
Autonomy means being able and allowed to make certain decisions for one’s self. It also means that you have the capacity to self-govern in a morally correct way. With no supervision, you must be trusted to do the right thing.
As an employee, you would want to feel not only equipped but also permitted to make decisions and take action on your own. Many companies will give you the option to work at your own pace, as long as you meet all the goals set out by your department and the company.
Imagine that you work at a graphic design company and you are asked to produce thirty designs at the end of each week. However, your boss demands that you work from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. even though you are most creative at night. Think of the level of demotivation and low productivity that you will endure.
This core value benefits both the company and the employees. Employees are left feeling empowered and trusted and the company goals are met. As a result, the company’s overall productivity and staff morale will be high.
Having integrity as a core value means that you value doing what is right, even when no one can see you do it. Anyone can do the right thing when they have an audience, but it takes someone of strong character to do what is right without one. If this is a core value, more than likely, you prioritize honesty, transparency and commitment to all the stakeholders of your company.
Integrity is a desirable core value to have in the business world. When people know that they can trust you they are more likely to do business with and work for you. When companies consistently exemplify integrity, they develop loyalty from their customers and employees.
The way in which people do business changes quite often. The things that were trending in business in the early 2000’s are certainly now what are trending now. Being Innovative means that you match those changes and use them to improve the way that you do business with her on a personal level or within your organization.
People are more likely to be confident in people who they think are up-to-date with the trends in business. This makes you competitive and an attractive employee or employer. For this reason, it is important for you to find creative ways to ensure that you are up-to-date with what is happening in the business world.
For example, one of the new trends in businesses now is to have a social media presence. If someone hears about you or your business, searches for your social media and finds nothing they are less likely to move forward with the business engagement. What this communicates is that you are not modern or influential.
A company’s growth is determined by the professional and personal growth of its employees. When you value growth it means that you are continuously motivated to strive for improvement, both personally and within the workplace.
Valuing growth means that you will be intrinsically motivated to seek out various opportunities for personal and professional development. It also means that you have enough humility to recognize when you do not know something that is necessary for the job and learn it instead of pretending otherwise. This development will add value to your company and will have you thought of as an asset to the productivity, life and prosperity of the company.
As a business owner, you should be aware that many professionals are interested in personal and professional development. Therefore, it would be good to have those offerings as part of your hiring process to attract qualified applicants. Consistent training to match the changes in trend as well as workshops to help you staff develop interpersonal skills are some things that should be budgeted for annually.
Promise to Consumers
Valuing promises to consumers or good customer service means that you prioritize the goods and/or services that you provide to your consumers. You believe in giving quality service at all times. This way your consumers do not feel disadvantaged when they opt to do business with you.
Having service as a core value also means that you have invested in giving staff the proper training and equipment that they will need to successfully and consistently give quality service. One of the easiest ways to frustrate employees is to leave them in a situation where they are not fully equipped for a job, especially if they work directly with customers. However, if your staff are properly equipped, they will be empowered and equipped to carry out tasks to provide the best result for consumers and the company.
Diversity and Inclusion
Each demographic of people has something unique to offer to the work environment. Having a company where a variety of people can come and share their lived experiences will add to the creativity and productivity of the company. This will also help employees of minority groups to feel comfortable in the work environment which will result in a higher productivity rate.
A current business trend is to ensure diversity of staff at all levels. Being a company that is known for diversity will attract quality workers and customers. Modern-day employees crave and gravitate towards companies that promote and foster diverse work environments.
Valuing teamwork means that you encourage collaboration and create a safe space for people to share their opinions. When people are in this kind of environment, they are more likely to have positive feelings and make better contributions. It also helps to build staff morale, when teammates make contributions that are accepted by the rest of the team.
We have all heard the saying “two heads are better than one”, and that is exactly the embodiment of teamwork. Major projects or brainstorming sessions tend to be more efficient and effective when there is an entire team working on it versus an individual. This allows for the turn out of projects to not only be timely but also well thought out. With a team, employees are better able to hold each other responsible to complete their tasks.
Having a company that exemplifies good teamwork also attracts valued stakeholders who also value teamwork. When people invest in a business, they want to know that the best brainstorming, use of resources and project momentum is taking place.
Having passion as a core value means that you have joy, not just for the job itself, but also for the people you encounter while you work. With this people feel more inclined to expressing their passions and being more innovative. This helps to build staff morale and customer loyalty.
Think about the emotions you experience when you are working on a project that you are excited about. If you are met with negativity or your thoughts are dismissed, your level of motivation for the current and even future projects will be considerably less.
When employees are in a work environment that allows them to work through their passions, they are more likely to be happy. Happy people are more productive which benefits the overall employee morale and workplace efficiency.
What have you learned? If you are eager for more information, here is a list of a few other core values that can be used in the foundations and operation of a company:
- Being a Family