When we encourage leaders to define the values of their company, we occasionally get pushback. “Values” can seem like such a nebulous term, unconnected to the daily operations, sales, and revenue of business. But the fact is, your values are the driving force of your business because your values drive your culture, your culture drives your differentiation in the marketplace, and your differentiation drives your profits.
Consider this real-world example. One of our client companies is a home health care firm that employs nurses to treat patients in their own homes. The CEO and his leadership team firmly believe in the importance of the core values of the company. They have defined the company’s core values carefully and apply them in every area of business. That includes the end-to-end recruiting process: whom they recruit, whom they interview, how they interview, and whom they hire.
The CEO and his colleagues understand that most of the nurses who apply at their company are licensed, qualified, and skilled. They want to go beyond that basic standard to find people who are a perfect cultural fit. To do so, they have built their entire recruitment and interview process around their company’s core values. If there is even a hint that an applicant does not align completely with those core values, they are turned down. No exceptions.
The result is an incredibly strong company culture where every person shares the same core values. Not surprisingly, the company’s values and culture have become its distinguishing mark in a competitive environment and an incredible draw for clients and patients.
The takeaway is clear: if you spend time defining your core values and align your business around them, you will reap the rewards in terms of a positive company culture and a powerful company position in the marketplace.