Company values are more than just a few buzz words painted on the office walls. They are ultimately what supports the company’s mission, shapes the organisational culture and give it an identity in the marketplace.
When executed properly, company values provide both internal and external advantages;
1 – Company values aid with decision making – If a new product, vendor relationship or marketing opportunity conflicts with the company values then it becomes instantly clear when to say no.
2 – Company values give your brand a clear identity – In a noisy and crowded marketplace, it essential to be known for something. Become the brand of choice for those who align with your business’s core values.
3 – Company values are essential for recruiting and retaining good staff members – As the candidate marketplace becomes tougher and tougher, a company’s value and culture become an important factor for job seekers.
Harness the power of company values in your firm
Company values are usually developed by the organisation’s leaders and the top tier of management and in too many instances do not filter through the organisation to reach employees at all levels.
The values won’t be lived, and the intended culture won’t develop unless those values are filtered down through every level of the organisation.
From management down to front line staff, every team member needs to not only fully understand and appreciate what the core values are but know how to implement them in their everyday practice and workplace interactions.
How do company values retain good staff?
When employees know and understand the company values, they develop a stronger affinity towards them. As a result, staff become more engaged with the organisation and passionate about its success, they can see their role in contributing to the company’s mission. This creates a deeper level of engagement and job satisfaction for individuals.
“Highly engaged teams show 21% greater profitability” – Forbes
Research shows that engaged employees make it a point to show up to work and do more work- “highly engaged business units realize a 41% reduction in absenteeism and a 17% increase in productivity. Engaged workers also are more likely to stay with their employers.” – Gallup.
How to ensure the company values are embodied by your workforce
There are a few key actions to focus efforts on when it comes to adopting values across an organisation. To make real change its important to note that small steps taken consistently will have greater effects than large, one-off initiatives that aren’t followed up.
Here’s our top four organisational habits to ensure company values are adopted by staff through all levels of an organisation.
1. Leading by example
If core values are established by business leaders but then do not follow through in their actions, this obviously has a detrimental effect across the organisation. A void is established between the leadership team and the workforce.
Engagement with company values must begin at the top if it is to pervade the entire workforce.
2. Recognising and rewarding value-centric behaviour
When employees do operate in a manner which is consistent with the company’s values they should be recognised and rewarded for it. Recognition doesn’t have to come in the form of a bonus or a pay rise, a simple acknowledgment from management that their behaviour reflects the company in a positive light is enough to encourage people that they are in the right place of work.
The engage4 app enables one to one recognition with others through the High 5 feature. Send your colleagues, teammates or staff members a High 5 to show them that their contribution is valued.
3. Fostering an environment of communication and collaboration
Core values should be communal. It’s impossible to develop a consistent set of values across an organisation when the teams are isolated from one another. Encouraging collaboration, socialising and communication is essential to spread positive ideas and behaviours across groups of individuals.
Engage 4 makes it easy to create groups, set community challenges, share news and connect with others.
4. Adopting staff feedback
Open a two-way communication channel with your staff and ask them where they want to see change or enhancements to the company. Rather than guess what will keep your staff engaged, motivated and happy to fulfil their role each day, ask them. Follow up with their feedback and communicate which of their suggestions are possible, keep everyone in the loop regarding the work being done to facilitate their ideas for improvements.
Engage4 has several tools to open a two-way dialogue; Check in on individuals quickly with the check in pulse, create a poll and gather instant feedback on a topic from selected teams or the entire organisation. Armed with this data you can then take some well-informed steps towards ingraining company values even more deeply through the organisation.
Changing your workplace culture to live and breath the core values is by no means an overnight fix. This will be a continual process that needs constant management to drive forwards, but the rewards are clear. A workplace that epitomises its core values attracts and retains individuals and benefits from a more productive, engaged and profitable workforce.