What’s the secret behind company values that work?

How would you describe the personality of your business in just a few words? And how would your colleagues describe it? A company with an identity connects your employees and aligns them with  your overall mission and vision. Square Circle provides you with interesting insights to help define and implement your values.

Involve your team in the process

Values should be worn like a suit, not kept in a suitcase that you only open when you need it. You embrace values because they are personally meaningful and because they add something to the way you work as a team. They need to be shared by everyone in your company to be effective. That is why values cannot be determined top-down and employees should be involved in creating values that work.

Create clear and limited values

Values shape your company culture, how employees behave, how strategies are decided, and how successes are celebrated. Values should be lived by your employees and expressed in their day-to-day interactions. For this reason, it is important that your values clearly express what is expected of your employees. Do not hesitate to fundamentally review your values, and involve your employees in the process, in order to (re)formulate them and clarify these expectations. You will see how energising this is!

Limit the amount of your values to three or four. A higher number will be hard to translate into specific behaviour, increasing the chances that your employees won’t live by them. Do you have five or more values? Review them critically, perhaps you are overestimating the capabilities of your team.

Set an example and promote the right behaviour

Values should be promoted top down, by talking about them regularly at team meetings. By using them as a compass in evaluating employee behaviour. By emphasising proper behaviour as well as speaking up to those who don’t put your values into practice.

Management plays a key role in implementing a company’s values. As a leader, you must think about them daily and talk about them regularly. If values are upheld, employees are more motivated, more involved and more connected with management, benefitting, in turn, your customers, partners and stakeholders.

Need support in reviewing or defining your company values? Square Circle helps employees reflect on values through interactive workshops. Working bottom-up, we help define values and their corresponding behaviours, always taking care that they are equally supported by upper management. Together, we can come to clear agreements. Curious to know more? Get in touch.