Hiring and training employees is costly. Hiring and training employees who end up being a bad fit for your company is costly, painful and will inevitably leave you back where you started. The easiest way to avoid a costly situation is to know the core values of your company — and more importantly, to live them.
Company culture starts with values. And a cultural fit plays a huge role in the recruitment, satisfaction, retention and performance of your employees. Here’s how to set your company’s talent recruitment process up for success.
Defining Core Values for Employee Hiring
At Conveyor, anytime we talk about core values, this quote comes up:
“…when properly practiced, values inflict pain. They make some employees feel like outcasts. They limit an organization’s strategic and operational freedom and constrain the behavior of its people. They leave executives open to heavy criticism for even minor violations. And they demand constant vigilance.”– Patrick M. Lencioni, Harvard Business Review
We love this quote and the article it came from because we’re passionate about helping companies define their core messaging, of which values are a key component.
A well-defined set of core values should act as a filter for hiring, a yardstick for performance and a roadmap for company culture. But defining your company values is the easy (well, easier) part. It can be as simple as a brainstorming session with your employees and colleagues, or a full-on guided workshop with professionals. The important thing is to have a set of values that you and your employees feel truly represent your business.
Bringing Core Values to Life
Once you know your core values, what you do with them makes all the difference. Lots of businesses have their values written on their website somewhere, but few make the effort to craft their values into a living culture. Here are some ways to live your core values and retain top talent in the process:
Incorporate values into interviews: Ask prospective employees if they’ve read the company values. What did they think of them? How do they feel about company culture? Getting early insight into the way your values are received can be a great help later in the process.
Make them a part of onboarding: Found the perfect match? Fantastic. Don’t let values fall by the wayside post-hire. Instead, incorporate them into your onboarding process by including background, anecdotes and activities designed to show these values in action.
Find day-to-day ways to include them: For example, if sustainability is one of your values, bring that to life in your company by encouraging alternative transportation, recycling programs or even a remote workplace. The options are endless, and every value is a goldmine of opportunities.
Revisit them: No business stays in the same place for long, and as your company grows and shifts, your values may too. Take the time to engage with your employees and really hash out what values your company embodies. We advise checking in on your values annually, just to be sure they reflect where you company is today and where it’s heading in the future.
With a developed and integrated set of core values, your business will be positioned to attract and retain the best and the brightest. So go forth, believe in something, and let those values shine!