How to Create Your Company Culture
Purpose and Values Statement Part 1
I am often asked why you don’t get more consistent results from your team and why do team members inevitably disappoint you no matter how promising they appeared when you hired them?
The answer is simple – they are following the company culture. You ask what culture? Well, every company has one, whether on purpose or by default but you have one and you created it!
My name is Scott Lollar and am I’m DYB Coach and I want to show you that while culture is a great buzzword, it needs to be unpacked and clarified for an outcome that unleashes limitless potential for your team. I think we all can agree that trust and track leadership has proven itself a better model than the old command and control model where people do what they are told because they are scared of management.
I learned this concept from Nick Sarillo and his book “A Slice of the Pie: How to build a big little business”.
I also had the benefit of living close to Nick’s Pizza Restaurants and have enjoyed spending some time with him.
I highly recommend getting a copy of his book and reading it with your management team.
So how do we capture our culture so we can model it, preach it, teach it, correct it, and live by it?
What we need is to have a company culture on purpose.
It needs to be identified, written and talked about constantly and consistently.
There are three key steps so that people know who we are and how we go about delivering our product consistently.
Today, I want to talk about the first two steps.
These are the purpose statement and then the values statement.
Nick talks about the Purpose being the “why” and the values being the “how.”
The first thing we want to do is to create our Purpose Statement.
Many are familiar with mission statements and vision statements.
I prefer a purpose statement.
Mission statements tend to be goal oriented which mean little to a small organization while a vision is into the future.
A purpose statement is a reflection of who you are now.
What is your guiding purpose? Why do you exist as an organization?
In creating a purpose statement, I would stay away from most descriptors that are industry specific.
Painting is what you do. It is not your purpose.
What is your team passionate about? What is unique to what your team is doing?
The statement might include:
- Serving others
- Delivering an experience or outcome
- Solving a problem
- Doing something different than the norm. Disrupting. Changing.
An example might be:
We serve those we encounter by creating a process that is predictable and stress-free while creating an environment that exceeds the desired expectation of those who trusted us with their property.
“Those we encounter” helps us understand we are not just talking about one group.
We are talking about employees, vendors, and customers.
We are talking about everyone that we work with and for.
“Creating a process” gives testimony that a detailed process is not common in our industry and in addition will be the foundation to our future growth.
And “creating an environment” speaks to how people will respond to what we do for them whether it is the warm tones of a living room or a refresh of factory walls.
The result in both cases is an improvement in the environment you painted for them.
Play with this. Ask your team to participate, get a few examples and keep it vague enough to allow for expansions and pivots as needed.
The magic really comes in the values statements and is also a lot more fun to create. Have your team brainstorm every value of your company.
Put them up on a whiteboard or flip chart.
Just keep writing.
Fun, adventurous, intuitive, respectful, caring, community-focused, respectful, balanced, celebratory, we communicate.
You could go on and on.
Many times what comes out are sentences that can be modified and shortened and sometimes be reduced to one word.
Once you have exhausted all your top of mind values, look for similar or redundant values and select the ones that best describe your company and eliminate the ones that are not a bullseye.
I like to look for the main themes. I think you should have header values and support values.
For instance “We operate with Integrity” is a great header value but what are some descriptor sub values? How about:
We operate with Integrity:
- We do what we say are going to do
- We are honest in everything we do
You will notice, after some reflection, that your values can be grouped together under the main heading.
Here are a few great values to get you started with your team:
- We celebrate success
- We continually grow and improve
- We take responsibility when we fall short of our expectations
- We pursue balance in our life-both at work and at home
- We respect others and work as a team
- We operate profitably
- We embrace technology and new ways of accomplishing things
- We have a can-do attitude
- We deliver a quality product that exceeds our customers’ expectations
Spend two hours with your key team, both management, and hourly employees and you will be amazed at what your team comes up with.
Come up with your values.
As a guide, keep it to maybe 10 items max
In part two, we will discuss how we can take the values and create processes and procedures to create very specific outcomes that will keep everyone accountable.
And send me your purpose statements and values! I would love to see what your team came up with. And as always, if I can serve you in any way, you can reach me at Scott@DYBCoach.com