Let's first define value.
What is a value?
A value is a standard or principle that guides behavior. It's a shared belief, custom, or ideal that defines a group.
And in the context of your brand and business, your core values are foundational to your identity.
Cheesy as it may sound, they are your north star.
Now let's talk about what's NOT a value.When working with new brands or brands in a period of growth and rebranding, I often find that there is confusion between values and qualities. For example, “honesty” - this is a quality that should be expected. You're expected to operate honestly.
Another common example is trust. I had a chat with a new friend about this, and I love the way she framed it. She said trust isn't a value, because it's the result. You build trust when you live up to your values.
What to consider when determining your core values.The core values that define your brand and inform/drive your business should reflect more than just your product and the general qualities we expect in relationships.
We need to dig deeper to really uncover our values. And if you think you’re already digging deep…dig even deeper.
Consider the following:
These are just some questions to help you determine your core values. And you can start by making a list of all the values that resonate with you, then narrow them down to 3-5 core values that will create the foundation for your business and brand.
How do you define core values?When I work with brands to define what 3-5 core values ground them, center them, and set a foundation for them, I consider 3 aspects.
Let me share an example:
Recently I was working with a brand new business - a jewelry maker - and as I helped them define their brand voice, we discussed what their core values would be.
One of the core values we decided on was “high-quality.”
At first when my client listed this as a core value I thought, “well, duh…your jewelry should be high quality.” But for this business, “quality” is about more than just the product. It’s about living a high-quality life, too.
Within the company...high-quality is not just about the product and services, but also about allowing everyone to the most authentic version of their best selves.
For their ideal customer...high-quality is an attitude about life.
For their community...high-quality is about making the aspiration of a "high-quality" life our reality.
Take your time determining and defining your values. What do your values mean specifically to you, your ideal customer, and your community?
How do they apply and live in action within your business, with your ideal customer, and within your community?
Are you having trouble defining your core values? Or is it time to revisit them? DM me to see how we can get super clear on your values and ensure that they are thoughtfully integrated into your communications.
Be excellent to each other.