“Values are like fingerprints. Nobody’s are the same, but you leave ‘em all over everything you do.”
– Elvis Presley
Company Values Make a Company Stand Out
Many companies have come to understand the importance of having values but struggle to discover them. For this reason, they either do not list any at all or choose values that look good, instead of ones that represent the company. This often leads to the same ten values being used by companies in the same industry, causing them to blend together. Like Elvis Presley said, ‘nobody’s are the same,’ which should also be true for the values of companies.
In some industries, values are one of the only distinguishing factors between companies on a surface level. Many firms are providing a high standard of service at competitive rates and as such it can be difficult for a company to differentiate itself. It is a company’s culture that makes it unique, and company values create an opening for people to get a sneak peek of what that company culture is like.
Whether they realise it or not, every company has values; they just have to be found. The best way to find the core values is to engage and involve people within the company. To start, ask employees what their understanding of the company values and culture are, and create a list of common phrases and words used in the company. Once this list has been made, look for overlap and themes among the words. From there the list can be narrowed down, revealing the core values of the company.
Discovering a company’s values is only half the battle, knowing how to articulate and develop them is what brings it all together. When describing a company’s values there are two audiences, those interested in the company and those in the company. For those interested, it is beneficial to list ways in which the company embodies their values. This shows the importance of the company’s values and what they provide based off of these values. For those in the company, it is more beneficial to list the behaviours and actions that can be taken, which are influenced by the values. This allows employees to better understand what is expected of them and guides them when making decisions.
One company that has successfully done this is KPMG. They open with a paragraph explaining how their values drive their decisions and guide them day to day. They then list their values and next to each one they give an example of what action they take based on the value. It is obvious that they spent a considerable amount of time finding their values because they not only provide behavioural examples, but they were thoughtful with the values they chose. Their last value listed is ‘For Better.’ This stands out and shows that they took the time to pick values that are unique to them, demonstrating to clients how much they care.
Attract and Inspire
There are many benefits that come with having the right values, one of which being that a company is more likely to attract and hire the right people. If the values listed resonate with someone, then they are more likely to be a better fit since the values embody the company culture.
It is not just about attracting the right people but also creating employee satisfaction. Having actionable company values that employees can strive for gives them purpose. This keeps employees engaged and makes them more productive, which in turn boosts business performance.
It may seem like employee satisfaction is an individual problem, but it can become a problem for the entire company. When employees are not satisfied it shows in their work. A study conducted by Gallup revealed that companies in the United States lose between $450 and $550 billion in productivity annually do to actively disengaged employees. This is a result of them not being satisfied in their work environment, which in turn stems from the values of the company. Values impact everything just as fingerprints get on everything. This is why values need to be thoughtfully chosen, and moulded, otherwise they can hurt the company.
At MSP Reach we understand that choosing values is easier said than done. It can be challenging finding values that are both unique and represent the entire company.
Contact us for a no obligation discussion to learn more about our brand services and how we can support you in discovering your company’s values.