How do you make sure core company values matter to employees? That can be one of HR’s toughest questions. A strong, successful company is built on a set of core values that help define the organization, orient employees in an ever-changing corporate environment, and help to establish lasting relationships with clients. However, these values are not always easy to instill in others—and ensuring your employees understand and exemplify them can often be challenging.
Fortunately, there are three simple ways to help your employees live out your company’s core values:
1. Make Every Employee Feel Like Part of the Team
The first step is ensuring employees care about the company and the work they do there.
As any good manager knows, employees who are happy perform better at work, and those who feel like they are an integral part of the company are more likely to live out the company’s values. There are lots of little ways employers can help keep employees happy, such as taking the time to get to know them a little bit better.
One easy way to do achieve this: Use your HR tool’s custom employee profiles to keep up with the little details—employee birthdays, work anniversaries, hobbies, and even snack and drink preferences. Having all this information at your fingertips helps build stronger connections in the workplace.
Those connections can be made even stronger still by giving employees an opportunity to share with one another through a social news feed. Seeing regular reminders of the company’s core values, staying up to date on what’s happening within the organization, and sharing personal victories are great ways to improve communication skills and increase accountability.
2. Let Employees Know How They Are Doing
Before being able to truly live a company’s core values, an employee needs to understand what those values are, what the company strives to achieve, and what role he or she plays in making that happen.
Setting expectations, providing regular feedback, and commending a job well done are all things that can help motivate an employee. Use talent management tools in concert with your project management software to set goals, define competencies, and track the progress of tasks so employees can take ownership of their work.
Since self-improvement starts with self-awareness, providing feedback is essential. Fortunately, this is now easier than ever with performance reviews and reporting that can be used to identify both areas of strength and areas in need of improvement. Celebrate great work and displays of core values in an employee appreciation tool. These habits are especially important since employee appreciation has been shown to be an important aspect in the modern workplace.
3. Live Your Company’s Core Values Yourself
Because any good manager leads by example, an employer must first be committed to a company’s core values in order for them to really stick with employees.
Perhaps the most important role an employer plays in ensuring that his or her employees live a company’s core values is communicating them. After all, you know these values. Maybe you even helped determine what your company’s core values would be. It is imperative that you express an understanding of and commitment to them if you expect others to do the same.
During meetings, when providing feedback, and even when posting on the social news feed, make sure you are proudly broadcasting the company’s values.
To ensure that your messaging is effective, consider seeking formal feedback from your employees. Do they understand what the values are? Do they agree with them? Try using an ongoing feedback option where you can conduct surveys to understand where your employees stand.
Finally, make sure every new person you bring into the company embodies those core values. When recruiting new employees, seek out those who will not only be a good fit for your company, but who will also demonstrate the qualities most important to your organization Finding these employees might not be easy, but it will be worth it.
Laura Hudgens is a writer for TechnologyAdvice.com. She is a communications instructor and freelance writer who studies and writes about technology, media, science, and health.