Forget Your Abs! Work Your Core Values!
Do you have a New Year’s resolution to get that six pack in 2021? Forget about it! Or don’t. But while you’re at it work your core values in our interactive exercise!
Just like your body’s core, your business’s core values provide you and your staff with stability. When you determine, document, and declare your values, you have a powerful code that makes decision making easier and faster. When you follow them they also ensure that you maintain the course you want to follow.
Not only are they important for stability and decision making but 64% of consumers say that shared values create trust with brands. This will only expand as more brands enter the marketplace virtually. If you look at the big, big companies who can really flex their muscles, like Procter and Gamble or Nike, they have been and are making major business choices based on core values like social justice, body image issues, and more. It’s up to you how much of an activist you want to be. Doing a core values exercise will help you decide.
Questions to Ask Yourself During a Core Value Exercise
I like to have clients think about these questions to help them choose their core values:
- When did you first become interested in your product or service? What drew you to it?
- What do you think is the most important thing for customers, stakeholders or employees to know about your products or services?
- What do you want people to know about your business approach?
- How do you want people to feel when they use your product or service? (list 5 adjectives)
- Who is the ideal person that will purchase your products or services? (list 5 adjectives)
When you answer these questions your core values pretty much magically materialize. It’s a lot easier
then eating chicken breasts and broccoli along with grueling planks and I don’t know what (I’ve never been successful) to get those abs. Amarite?!
Core Value Exercise Sample Answers
I’ll demonstrate the exercise here so you can get a feel for it! For the sake of the pun at hand, let’s say you are the founder of the AbFlexUltimate.
1. When did you first become interested in your product or service? What drew you to it?
I had a degree in kinesiology and knew I could create something that would help people achieve their core goals faster than sit ups. I also knew that getting to the gym every day is difficult for people, and home gym equipment and gym memberships are really expensive. I really wanted to create something affordable. Everyone deserves abs!
2. What do you think is the most important thing for customers, stakeholders or employees to know about your products or services?
We have a simple device that not only works your abs but the whole body.
3. What do you want people to know about your business approach?
We are really interested in creating a community around fitness. We don’t just want to sell a product, we want our customers to engage in healthy choices and create opportunities for our customers to interact with us and each other. Share questions, successes, and ideas.
4. How do you want people to feel when they use your product or service? Describe the feeling with 3- 5 adjectives.
Accomplished, proud, refreshed
5. Who is the ideal person that will purchase your products or services? Describe their personality with 3- 5 adjectives.
Busy, goal-orientated (or want to be), fit-focused (or want to be)
Now, we head over to our NEW CORE VALUE APP! This will make your core workout even easier! We promise. Look at your answers and then look to the cards on the app and move cards over that apply to this scenario!
Values we might take from that are:
Stated right in the reason why they became interested in their business.
It sounds like an innovative product… if the company was looking to create new products or ways for people to use this product, innovative, ingenuity, or creative might be a core value.
Community and probably inclusion would be good choices. The founders don’t just want to sell a product and be done with the customer. They also want everyone to feel that they can be a part of the community because they specifically made it affordable and accessible so that anyone can use it.
This one is a little harder, but there’s something in here that is really important. If you want people to feel proud, accomplished, or refreshed you might choose optimistic, recognition, and vitality.
Ambition seems like a good fit for goal -orientated people. Resourcefulness if your customers are busy but fit-focused. Also, the product is an innovative resource for your customers. Perseverance is relevant as well.
The Potential Core Values List
Here’s the core values list based on the exercise:
At this point AbFlexUltimate should eliminate and combine these to narrow it down to 5 core values. The fewer the values, the more powerful they become. Once you’ve narrowed it down, then write a sentence that explains the value, why it was chosen, and how to manifest that core value in the company. In addition to providing a list of over 150 core values, our app has a space for writing what your top 5 values mean.
How & Where to Use Your Core Values
Here’s where you can show off your core values!
- Employee Handbook
- Brand Book
- Creative Guidelines
- Meeting Rooms – so your peeps remember that ALL decisions should be based on this code.
The New Year is a great time to set and reset intentions -especially after the doozy that was the year of 2020. Maybe your values changed due to the events that took place during the year. Use the questions and our Core Values Exercise App to help you along.
If you have any more specific questions about your brand identity or core values you want to discuss over Zoom, reach out!
Mary Jane Connor is a partner and creative director at Bizzy Bizzy. Branding expert Mary Jane is passionate about brand identity. She is a self-proclaimed design stickler as well as a musician, visual artist, maker and creative dabbler.