Identifying your company values – ten examples to get you started.

Company values with happy staff

Identifying your company values is critical to the success of your business, your brand, and your people.

The company values you choose to operate by are the foundation from which all else is built. How do you go about identifying and defining the most suitable values for your company? We’ve put together a list of ten to get you started.

1. Customers first

Whilst it might be a very traditional value, customer-centricity and how you prioritise it can make or break a business. Whether you’re a B2B or B2C, working this into your values and tailoring it to your business will help you make business decisions that demonstrate your commitment to the customer.

2. We celebrate diversity

Celebrating diversity and committing to an inclusive workplace that champions differences is a value that most jobseekers look for. What that looks like for your organisation depends on your industry and your diversity initiatives.

3. We innovate

Organisations that encourage their people to innovate are more likely to retain their staff. Feeling heard and acknowledged when suggesting innovative ideas or better ways to do things, keeps people engaged and motivated.

4. We give back

Whether you call it philanthropy or corporate social responsibility – this is about giving back to the community that your business operates within. This can be monthly contributions, fundraising drives, or a day off for staff to volunteer.

5. Above all – we respect

Communication, rapport, wellbeing, and success – all things that a company can embody if there’s mutual respect between employees. It can be helpful to define what this means – whether it’s being kind to each other, always listening to others or remaining calm in stressful situations.

6. He Tāngata Principle – We value our people

‘He aha te mea nui o te ao, he tāngata, he tāngata, he tāngata ….What is the most important thing in the world? Well, let me tell you, it is people, it is people, it is people.’ The He Tāngata Principle acknowledges that nothing is possible without your people. Think about how you’ll implement and demonstrate this as a business and work with your employees to find out what it means to them.

7. We dare to be great

A company that encourages their people to be great, will build more than just a business. Supporting and challenging your people on their journey allows you to build a great employee culture where people feel inspired.

8. We are accountable

Being accountable to both customers and colleagues means taking ownership. You can narrow this down to define what that means in your company – whether it’s about delivering projects on time, acknowledging mistakes, or communicating any problems.

9. We are authentic

Customers and employees know when a company value is lip service only – so choosing authenticity as a value means it must be demonstrable. Think about how you can demonstrate your authenticity across the workplace and externally.

10. We persevere

It’s impossible to fail if you persevere – as the saying goes. As a company value it means that you keep going when times are tough, that you encourage your employees to persevere and overcome obstacles.

Once you’ve nailed down your company values, it’s important to revisit them regularly to make sure they’re being put into practice and to ensure they’re still relevant. Businesses change, just like people, so your company values may need to be updated from time to time. Collaborating with employees to refresh and update them is good practice if you want your people to live them.


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