Identifying company values, along with a mission and vision of the future, is considered table stakes if you want to run a successful company. But integrating and living by those values is more difficult than it seems.
It’s still common for leadership teams to go through elaborate exercises to craft a set of company values — and then fail to make them a meaningful part of the company culture.
In EOS, core values are a big part of the Vision/Traction Organizer™ (V/TO™). If you use EOS to run your company and follow the system to the letter, your values WILL be integrated into the beliefs and actions of your employees on a cellular level.
What does that look like exactly? You hire, fire, and reward team members based on core values. Everyone in your company knows and can explain your core values. All business decisions, including strategy, initiatives, and prioritization are based on core values.
Living Your Values
Let’s assume that you’ve put significant thought into identifying the right values. You also need to put ongoing effort into integrating your core values into your company.
Here are some key questions to ask yourself and/or your leadership team:
- Which values have we been using to make decisions?
- Does any one value stand out or shine through?
- How do our values shape our actions?
- Are there any values that seem out of alignment or that we aren’t using?
- Are we learning anything else about our company that should be included in our values?
If you have trouble answering these questions, you probably have vague, ambiguous, or weak core values. Across the board, companies with weak values face more struggles and stress than companies that know exactly what matters to them.
When your values are strong, you can lean on them to make good decisions, even under pressure. The path forward becomes obvious — even unavoidable — because you have to make choices in line with your values. Those choices aren’t always easy, but if you’re living your core values, you can be confident that they’re right.
Previously published on the Crews Consulting Group blog