Every day our core values are challenged. Whether it be from a customer, staff member or even supplier, we face constant bombardment. However holding strong on your core values is the most important challenge you will face.
Taking a step back, your core values are exactly that. A group of values you commit to in respect to how your business is run. They’re like your guiding light through business. Every decision must be inline with them. If not, it’s the wrong decision.
Your core values act like your internal compass and should you compromise them you begin to act against what you stand for, against your gut in a way. Ask any successful business person and they’ll always share an experience with you about when they compromised and how it came back to haunt them.
A simple example is a new customer may ask for longer payment terms. They sold you on the idea and you trusted they would pay on time. Six months later and you’re still being told the cheque is in the mail. Now this example may be a clash of not only a policy, your payment terms, but also your core value to treat all customers equally. I’m sure we’ve all had a similar experience to this one.
If you’re reading this and scratching your head wondering what your core values actually are then its about time you wrote them down. Take a moment to think on a deeper level and state in writing what your business stands for. What you do and don’t do and why. It’s best to try and cut it down to five core values as this is easier to communicate with others however when you first start go nuts and write out as many as you can, then summarise to the most important. And never, never compromise on them.