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Jun 21'

The Complete Guide to Company Core Values Part 1: Why are core values so important?

Whether you’re on the HR team of a brand new company, have seen your organization go through a few evolutions since its inception or looking to build a rewards and recognition program, it might be time for you to go through the process of defining your company core values. Company core values can help to improve your company culture and result in stronger employee engagement.

Not sure where to begin? This guide will be a 3 part series where we start by outlining the importance of core values, then provide a step-by-step guide on how to define your core values and finish the series off with providing tips on how to implement your awesome new core values and start seeing results!

But first, let’s have a quick refresher on what company core values are all about and why going through the process of creating them is an initiative you shouldn’t put off any longer. 

employee engagement

What are company values?

Company core values are the rules that guide how a workforce thinks, behaves, and makes decisions both big and small. In simpler terms, they are what determine a way of life within a business every day. A company’s core values will largely depend on what type of corporate culture it has. 

You can tell when a business has their core values nailed down when you see them play out in everything they do, from how they hire new employees, to how they select vendors to work with, what charity initiatives they support, and what products or services they release into the world. They can also play a key role in a company's rewards and recognition program.

Why is defining company core values so important?

There are a couple of reasons why creating company core values helps your business: 

  1. They contribute to building a strong company culture 

Defining and communicating company core values is one major undertaking you can take to help develop a strong company culture. This is a great goal to work towards since companies with strong corporate cultures experience higher employee engagement and productivity. As well, when building a rewards and recognition program within your company, core values can be a great guide to how you reward and recognize your employees.

A global study on the role of purpose in the workforce by Imperative and Linkedin found that 58% of companies with a clearly articulated and understood purpose (through defining things like their mission and core values) experienced growth of +10% compared to the 42% of companies that didn’t make such efforts. 

  1. They improve employee engagement 

Crafting your company core values gives your staff a better understanding of the purpose they are fulfilling through their roles, and this motivates them to do a good job.

A study by Imperative found that purpose-oriented employees reported 64% higher levels of fulfilment in their work than non-purpose-oriented employees. They were also 47% more likely to be promoters of their employers. 

rewards and recognition
  1. They help attract top talent 

Your company core values can play a huge role in attracting qualified applicants to your job vacancies. What people look for when joining a company has changed; it’s not all about salary anymore. A Jobvite study found that 46% of candidates believe culture is very important when deciding what roles to apply to.

Sharing your core company values on your website and career pages is a good move for communicating what your company is all about to help attract qualified applicants whose values align with your company’s.

  1. They help get alignment on goals and behaviours 

Setting and communicating your company core values helps keep all levels of employees on the same page as they work towards common goals and fulfil your company’s mission and vision.

Values also help employees make decisions. If they’re ever unsure of what to do in any given situation, your values can be used as guidance in knowing how to act in any given situation. This is seen when implementing core values within a rewards and recognition program as employees are able to be recognized for exemplifying the company core values within their everyday work.

  1. They educate your stakeholders about who you are 

Your core values help educate the public about who you are as a company and can serve as a handy relationship-building tool. They help summarize how your business is unique to your competitors and fill stakeholders in on what they can expect from working with you. 

Now that you have a good understanding on why company core values are so important, stay tuned for part 2 where we provide a step by step process on how to define your core values.

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