Core Values: What Values Mean & How To Use Them

Core values define employees, clients, organizations and products / services. They are golden opportunities to build a foundation of expectations and trust.

Organization leaders must be responsible for the values their employees, organizations and their products / services demonstrate. Taking responsibility for their core values allows organizations to build their corporate culture and reputation with confidence.

How To Use Core Values
Core Values Save Time, Money and Reputation

When employees know their organizations values, they have an ethical base that will help them know how to act and what decisions (including strategic brand decisions), are in the best interest of their clients, the organization and its vision. For example, an organization may be striving for:

  • Health & safety
  • Continuous improvement
  • Customer satisfaction
  • Transparent communication

The additional benefit for an organization (beyond increased customer satisfaction), is that once employees understand the core values they will be able to make the right business decisions with greater confidence and speed (saving time, saving money and reducing mistakes). For example, values will:

  • Assist in the development of the organization (and department), mission statement, vision statement,  value statement and core competencies.
  • Influence the product / service design process when developing new products / services.
  • Serve as the starting ground for all marketing and advertising strategies and messages.
  • Be evaluated and measured within the people being considered for employment.

Example Of Values Disconnect

A large soup company that promotes health and family values has recently announced they will renege on a promise to reduce salt in many of their products – even with evidence that high salt diets have been previously linked to cardiovascular disease.

Values Measurement

The beauty is Bruce Mayhew Consulting is able to measure the gap between current organizational values and the core values clients have. Once we know the gap we can make adjustments to align ‘out of place’ values through messaging, training and ongoing support.

Conclusion

Imagine how powerful your product development and marketing messages could be if you knew for certain what your best clients’ values were and could address them head-on?

Support employee behaviour by demonstrating (through analysis and training), how employees can use values like health & safety and continuous improvement as they would use tools to do their job. Measure and reward their success by integrating values into each employee’s performance objectives.

Ultimately, defining and controlling the adoption of core values must be an organization wide commitment with buy-in at all levels. Values are living qualities (never static), that define the ethical personality of the organization and the people who work there. Integrating these values must be a priority for everyone.

In a few weeks we will publish a list of values including Physical Values, Organizational Values and Psychological Values.

Happy training.

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About Bruce Mayhew
Bruce Mayhew is a Leadership Coach, Keynote Speaker and Corporate Trainer who builds strong client and co-worker relationships that give clients a competitive advantage. Our training and development programs include: ■Generational Differences ■Effective Business Email Writing ■Email Etiquette ■Phone Etiquette ■Behaviour Event Interviewing (BEI) ■Mindfulness ■Using Linkedin to Build Client Relationships ■Objective Setting Made Easy

19 Responses to Core Values: What Values Mean & How To Use Them

  1. Bryce Winter says:

    Values statements have only fairly recently begun to emerge from companies (along with Mission and Vision statements). I believe they are quite fundamental, and a great way to measure individual as well as corporate progress within an organization. Our company’s core values statement:

    (MarkBrand): A UNIVERSE OF EXCELLENCE

    From this I get that our company is committed to both universality, and excellence.
    (I.e. accessibility and all that it entails, and the height of human achievement, and all that describes). Trust this example supports your great article and your work in helping company’s find–and align with their values!

    • Bruce Mayhew says:

      I agree Bryce, core values and value statements are fundamental to organizational success. I also LOVE that core values and value statements can be measured – both personal (employee), values – organizational values – and client values….and what can be measured can be acted upon (fixed / improved). I have a great exercise I do with clients for this.
      When an organization realizes a shared and well known direction (and language), it’s like putting boosters on a jet engine. Organizations can’t help but experience cohesive success and harmony internally and externally.
      Core values and value statements are exciting stuff and part of the reason why I love to go to work (almost), every day.

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