4 Ways to Bring Your Organizational Values to Life

These beliefs help build a strong team foundation and an even stronger company culture. Why not show them off?

learn more about Andre Lavoie

By Andre Lavoie


Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.

Every company has values, but not every company truly lives (and works) by them. It's those very beliefs that help build a strong team foundation and an even stronger company culture. However, a company's moral code can easily get lost in the hustle and bustle of the work day.

The key to bringing organizational values front and center is to convert them into specific, behavioral examples. By modeling and rewarding behaviors that demonstrate each value, employees are constantly reminded of what their company stands for and how to better work by those principles. Additionally, these observable behaviors make it easier for employers to measure and manage company standards.

Related: The 8 Values Every Company Should Live By

Don't let organizational values sit on the company career page and in the new hire handbook. Here are four easy ways to bring them to life:

1. Put values front and center.

It can be easy to lose sight of company values when focused on the task at hand. They should guide all aspects of business, from the decisions we make to the talent we source to the way we interact with customers. But they can't be applied if they're not remembered.

So how can employers make company values stick?

Keep the company's moral code at the forefront of everyone's mind by making it prominent within the workplace. In addition to featuring it on the company website and in the employee handbook (neither of which employees look at on a daily basis), post it where employees often gather (conference rooms, snack rooms, etc.). At ClearCompany, we have them painted on the walls throughout the office, along with our logo, to serve as a daily reminder for our team.

Reminding employees of values doesn't stop after crafting, laminating and posting posters throughout the office, however. They need to be communicated from the top on a regular basis.

2. Hire based on values.

Building a workforce that lives and works by the company moral code starts with hiring based upon values. For each of the company's values, develop a list of questions designed to assess a candidate's character and potential fit.

For instance, one of our values at ClearCompany is that we're team entrepreneurial. Asking interview questions related to a candidate's ability to be enterprising is essential to finding talent that shares and fulfills our values.

Related: Are Business Ethics at a Low Ebb?

People are often predisposed to sharing (or not sharing) the company's beliefs, so using the interview process to identify people who have similar principles is crucial to building a workforce that can successfully apply company ethics to everything they do.

3. Work (and play) by values.

The best way to bring organizational values to life is to model them. In other words, don't just let them sit on the wall and call it a day. Live, work and play by them on a daily basis.

One of software company VMware's values is to give more. The company does this by giving employees 40 hours of paid time off each year to volunteer. In addition to volunteering together, the company even has its own charitable foundation based on service learning, social investments, matching donations and milestone awards.

Actively model company values by aligning them with company culture activities, such as taking time off to volunteer together. Most important, lead by example. Show employees how it's done by using company character to guide business decisions and empowering employees to do the same.

4. Reward and promote values.

Last, but certainly not least, promote organizational values by rewarding behaviors that demonstrate them. Don't hesitate to publicly reward someone for exhibiting behaviors that are in line with the company's character. Not only does this make the individual feel good, it also pushes the rest of the company to follow suit.

One way we reward employees at ClearCompany is by featuring employees who demonstrate our values on our company website. Whether it's by making individuals "employee of the month," featuring the employee in the company newsletter, blog and/or website or by giving them a simple pat on the back, just be sure the behavior doesn't go unnoticed. After all, there's no better way to promote great behavior than to reward it.

How does your company bring organizational values to life? Share in the comments section below!

Related: When Employees Live a Company's Core Philosophies, Profits Follow

Andre Lavoie

Entrepreneur; CEO and Co-Founder, ClearCompany

Andre Lavoie is the CEO of ClearCompany, the talent-management solution that helps companies identify, hire and retain more A players. You can connect with him and the ClearCompany team on Facebook LinkedIn and Twitter.


Related Topics

Editor's Pick

Everyone Wants to Get Close to Their Favorite Artist. Here's the Technology Making It a Reality — But Better.
The Highest-Paid, Highest-Profile People in Every Field Know This Communication Strategy
After Early Rejection From Publishers, This Author Self-Published Her Book and Sold More Than 500,000 Copies. Here's How She Did It.
Having Trouble Speaking Up in Meetings? Try This Strategy.
He Names Brands for Amazon, Meta and Forever 21, and Says This Is the Big Blank Space in the Naming Game
Business News

These Are the Most and Least Affordable Places to Retire in The U.S.

The Northeast and West Coast are the least affordable, while areas in the Mountain State region tend to be ideal for retirees on a budget.

Business News

I Live on a Cruise Ship for Half of the Year. Look Inside My 336-Square-Foot Cabin with Wraparound Balcony.

I live on a cruise ship with my husband, who works on it, for six months out of the year. Life at "home" can be tight. Here's what it's really like living on a cruise ship.

Business Solutions

Master Coding for Less Than $2 a Course with This Jam-Packed Bundle

Make coding understandable with this beginner-friendly coding bundle, now just $19.99.


5 Ways to Build Grit in Times of Uncertainty While Growing Your Business Faster Than Others

Perseverance and grit are essential traits for any entrepreneur. By nurturing grit, you will become a better leader, grow your business faster and outperform your competitors.

Thought Leaders

The Collapse of Credit Suisse: A Cautionary Tale of Resistance to Hybrid Work

This cautionary tale serves as a reminder for business leaders to adapt to the changing world of work and prioritize their workforce's needs and preferences.

Business News

Mark Cuban's Grocery Store Hack Will Help You Score Cheaper Produce

The billionaire talked about his early days in Dallas when he was strapped for cash.