14 Effective Ways to Communicate Core Company Values
— June 13th, 2022
Your company’s core values are the beliefs, philosophies, and principles that drive your business and differentiate you from your competitors.
Having core company values can help you ensure each of your employees, from top leadership to entry-level staff, are working towards the same common goal, and understand your organization's overall purpose.
By establishing set values, you can communicate these common goals with your workforce and help employees and leadership understand the motivators behind company decisions.
Your company’s core values also play a significant role in determining your organization's culture. Company values such as trust, loyalty, respect, and accountability help foster a positive workplace culture.
This type of culture is vital in running a successful business; more than 50% of executives say corporate culture influences productivity, creativity, profitability, and growth rates.
It is recommended to implement around 3-5 core values into your business - too many have the potential to be overwhelming and hard to live up to in the long-run.
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Why are company values important?
Your company’s values are important as they help set you apart from other organizations operating in your industry. Customers are drawn to brands who have a strong set of values that they can relate to.
In fact, as many as 63 percent of consumers say they want to buy products and services from companies that have a purpose that resonates with their values and belief systems.
Having appealing company values is more important than ever. Consumers have become more discerning about business ethics and social responsibility. They seek values such as fairness, inclusivity, and equality in the brands they buy from.
And it’s not just customers that are impacted by your company values but your employees too. Having clear company values helps you ensure that all your employees are working towards the same goals.
Moreso, your company values also play a critical role in talent attraction: 46% of job seekers cite company culture as particularly important when choosing to apply to a company.
In addition to this, company values also make it easier to:
- Make decisions
- Foster teamwork
- Help employees collaborate
- Communicate principles to clients and customers
- Hire employees with the right attitude
- Align your team
- Improve motivation
Examples of company values
- Work-life balance
- Time management
Companies with inspiring values
Adidas’ core values comprise of performance, passion, integrity, and diversity. According to the sports brand, their values determine their purpose, mission, and attitude in everything that they do. This includes how they run their company, work with partners, create products and engage their customers.
The German-owned company put its values into practise by:
- Promoting an active lifestyle
- Creating innovative products
- Exceeding expectations
- Improving sports
- Manufacturing top quality products
Google's mission is to organize the world’s information and make it universally accessible and useful. It aims to achieve through its unique set of values which include the following:
- Focus on the user and all else will follow
- It’s best to do one thing really, really well
- Fast is better than slow
- Democracy on the web works
- You don’t need to be at your desk to need an answer
- You can make money without doing evil
- There is always more information out there
These are just some of Google’s long-list of values, all of which have succeeded in helping them become the go-to company in the technology, software, and computing sector.
According to Coca-Colatheir people are at the center of everything they do, from employees to those who touch business in the communities they call home. The global soft drink manufacturer backs up these claims with their unique set of values which serve as a compass for their actions. These values include:
- Diversity, equity, and inclusion
- Human and workplace rights
- Supplier diversity
- Diversity leadership
Back in 2004, Indeed first decided to create an innovative job site forced on employees rather than employers, changing the way people get jobs. As they transformed into an industry leader, Indeed defined five core values that helped them reach the heights they have attained.
- Pay for performance
- Data driven
Other examples of companies with inspiring values
- Adobe - genuine, exceptional, innovative, and involved
- American Express - customer commitment, quality, integrity, teamwork
- IKEA - leadership by example, humbleness and willpower, daring to be different, cost-consciousness
- Kellogg’s - accountability, passion, humility, simplicity
- Starbucks Coffee - creating a culture of warmth and belonging, where everyone is welcome
- Build-A-Bear - reach, learn, di-bear-sity, colla-bear-ate
- Barnes & Noble - customer service, quality, empathy, respect
- H&M - we believe in people, we are one team, straightforward and open-minded, keep it simple
- The Honest Company - create a culture of honesty, make beauty, outperform, service matters
- Facebook - focus on impact, move fast, be bold, be open
The Ultimate Guide to Internal Communications Strategy
Tips for defining your core values:
- Keep them short: Your core values should be concise and simple for employees to understand. Communicate your values in short sentences that capture their true essence.
- Be specific - When outlining your values, make sure you stay on topic and only share what is truly relevant. If you use confusing language to present your values in longform content, it leaves employees feeling confused rather than informed.
- Address internal and external goals -It’s important to be aware that your company values don’t just have an internal effect on your employees but that they also impact the outside world. Decide how you want the world to see your brand.
- Make them unique - One of the main reasons your brand values are important is the way in which they separate you from your competitors. When your values are not unique, they blend in with other businesses and do not attract the right customers.
How to communicate your core values
Consistent communication about your values is key to ensuring that your employees are aware of them and integrating them into their daily lives at work.
Use an engaging format
When communicating your core values, you should aim to do so through an engaging format. A one-page layout of your company’s mission, vision and values will no longer suffice.
The slideshow “Netflix Culture: Freedom & Responsibility” is a notable example of sharing company values in a way that promotes employee engagement. The streaming service’s easy-to-read slideshow walked both employees and outsiders through their core company values and why they are important.
For a simpler approach, you might consider creating a video where you talk about your company values to be shared with your employees and introduced during the onboarding process.
Simplify your mission, vision, and values statements
When communicating your company’s core values, mission, and vision, less is more. Long, complicated sentences can be hard for employees to understand. It is best to keep things straightforward with short sentences that convey a single idea.
Once your core values have been simplified and clearly defined, your company’s leaders should regularly reinform them through discussions with their teams.
Cover your core values during the onboarding process
There is no better time than the onboarding process to introduce and emphasize your company’s core values to new employees. Communicating your values early on sets new hires up for success by ensuring they are on the right page from the get-go.
Moreso, communicating your organization's values from day one helps inspire them to exceed expectations and contribute even more to the company's growth.
Hold quarterly town hall meetings
Hosting quarterly town hall meetings gives you the opportunity to reinforce your company’s core values, mission and purpose to employees. It helps ensure all your staff are aligned towards the same common goal. In a broader capacity, you can use town hall meetings as an educational opportunity to reinforce the things that every worker should know.
Share inspirational stories
Sharing inspirational stories during the onboarding process is an excellent way to get your new employees excited. Invite executives to tell stories about what inspired your company beliefs and how you implement them into the work that you do.
You should also give regular employees a chance to participate - it can be hard to know exactly where the most inspiring story will come from.
Organize an event
Whether you have already established your company’s core values and are seeking a way to reinforce them or you want to introduce them to your employees for the first time, hosting a company event is a great idea. An event allows you to easily bring your values to life and solidify their importance across your organization.
Lead by example
When you lead by example, you create a picture of what is possible. However, leading by example is about more than simply setting a good example. Instead, it means your organization's leaders must consistently exhibit values that they want the rest of the workforce to live up to.
Part of this is about ensuring that leadership is talking about your values with their teams and relating them to specific company tasks that emphasize their relevance and importance.
Have visual reminders
When communicating company core values, having visual reminders of values throughout the workplace will subtly reinforce them. When you use visual communication that aligns with your company's values, you can unite a strong workforce of engaged and productive workers who are ready and willing to embrace these values in the work they do.
Examples of visual communication methods that can remind employees of your business’s value include images, infographics, animation, GIFs, presentations, and mind maps.
To effectively communicate your core values, it is vital that both your internal and external messaging and communication accurately reflect them. Ideally, employees and customers see similar messaging and language on communications from the company or individual employees, showing that the company lives by its core values.
Conduct performance reviews
Performance reviews give both you and your employees important feedback. In terms of communicating core values, performance reviews give you the opportunity to talk to your employees about how they are currently upholding the company’s values.
This is a chance to offer advice to workers on what they can do moving forward to better uphold these values and integrate them into the work that they do.
Recognize employees who demonstrate company values
One of the best ways to communicate company values to your employees is to implement an employee recognition program. This means recognizing and rewarding those employees whose behaviors and actions support your company’s core values. Public praise highlighting the actions will inspire other workers to follow suit.
Create a core values playbook
Creating a playbook for each of your core values is an excellent way to communicate them with your employees. Ideally, this playbook would include several examples of each of your core values in action, making it concrete and demonstrable.
Incorporate values in the employer brand
Your brand should also communicate your core values. From messages on websites, email, social networks and job ads, you must be able to communicate your values clearly through your brand.
This is particularly important during the onboarding process where you must be able to clearly demonstrate your company’s values and beliefs to new employees. These new hires should also explore core values from the beginning as they interact with their new colleagues daily.
An informative careers page
A careers page is a section of your website dedicated to highlighting your employer brand and presenting job openings. A career’s page is a suitable place to tell job seekers about your company’s values, why your employees like working there, and why it’sa great opportunity for new employees.
The Ultimate Guide to Internal Communications Strategy
A company’s core values are the standards that guide the way they do business. In essence, your company’s values effectively sum up why your business exists, what it stands for and what it hopes to achieve. Your company’s values also have a considerable influence on your business’s culture.
Your company values should be completely unique to your organization and help differentiate you from competitors. Therefore,it is vital to never copy other businesses' values, no matter how good they sound on paper.
While business plans and strategies may change, the core values of your organization will remain the same. There are many effective ways to communicate your company values to employees, new hires, and customers. You can have visual reminders of your brand values, lead by example, use engaging formats and much, much more.