How to Create Core Values for Your Company or Startup: Why and How | Michael Luchies | Skillshare

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How to Create Core Values for Your Company or Startup: Why and How

teacher avatar Michael Luchies, Entrepreneur & Writer✎

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Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Watch this class and thousands more

Get unlimited access to every class
Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Lessons in This Class

    • 1.

      Promotional Video


    • 2.

      Core Values: Introduction


    • 3.

      Core Values: Examples


    • 4.

      Core Values: Project Walkthrough


    • 5.

      What to Do with Your Core Values


    • 6.



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About This Class

What does your business believe in? Do your employees and customers know? 

Your core values showcase what your business cares about. Your core values also serve as a guide for your employees on how to conduct themselves and help customers understand why they should do business with you. 

Good core values have the potential to increase sales and allow you to recruit better talent to your business.

Core Value Examples: 

  • Transparency: There are no secrets here. We provide honest and transparent services. 
  • Integrity: We hold ourselves to the highest standard in all aspects of our business.
  • Education: We embrace the mindset of a teacher, teaching customers while constantly learning ourselves. 

This course will walk you through creating your core values, from discovering what values are important to you to adding your finalized list of values to your website. After completing the course and your project, you will have clarity around what is most important to your business, and so will your employees and customers. 

Let's begin! 

Meet Your Teacher

Teacher Profile Image

Michael Luchies

Entrepreneur & Writer✎


Have you made your wildest dreams come true, or are you still searching for the right help to get you past your fears and doubts and on the right track to accomplish your dreams and goals? 

If you are ready to learn and want to improve yourself, build a business, or learn new skills, look no further! My name is Michael Luchies and I'm an entrepreneurial writer who guides entrepreneurs, startups, and small businesses towards growth with content. 

I am the Founder of TrepRep, Co-Founder of the Write Your Startup community, an experienced communications manager, amateur standup comedian, former contributor for Entrepreneur Magazine, TEDx alum, former Interview Editor and Podcast Host for Under30CEO, and Copywriter for Propllr. I have spent the past... See full profile

Level: Beginner

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1. Promotional Video: Every business has unique values and beliefs that help it connect with customers, partners, and their employees. What are your values and beliefs? This is where your core values play an important role in your business. My name is Michael rookies, and for the last 13 years, I've been writing for small businesses. I do anything from mission statements to taglines, to press releases, two core values. In this course, we're going to work on your core values together. We're going to help identify, create, and refine the values that are important to your business project in this course is of course, creating your core values. We'll go through several steps, including free grading, refining, and organizing your core values from most important to least important. So let's get started. Click on the next video, and let's get a step closer to creating your company's core values. 2. Core Values: Introduction: Welcome to create compelling core values for your company. I'm your host for this course, Michael looky, some entrepreneurial writer, and I'm very passionate about the subject. I also consider myself a storyteller and not much else does as good of a job communicating part of your story as your core values. And we're going to jump into that. Let's first look at our course agenda. So we're gonna start with the introduction which we're doing right now. We're then going to move on to examples of core values. Then we're going to create and finalize your core values and we'll wrap up with a summary. So as part of the introduction, I wanted to discuss why your business needs core values. Because then every business, especially not every startup, thinks about their core values, but it's extremely important. Now your business name that ties everything related to your business together, anything that your business does, it starts with your business name, whether it's a product, whether it's a service, it all comes back to your business name. Now your tagline is what you stand for and what your customers should embody. So with Apple, that's Think Different with Nike. It's just do it. Saying be active, go out there, do things. And your mission statement is why your business exists and your goal as accompany. Your core values are what your business believes in, in prioritizes. And especially with the world we live in. Now, people care about what the companies they work with, believe in and what they prioritize. And it's not only important to your customers, it's important to your employees. They want to be able to believe in their employer. They want to want to work for their employer. And this is where your core values play a really important role. Now for your employees, your core values act as rules they should follow when representing your company, from creating new products to providing customer service. Later on we're gonna go through examples and you'll see in companies like Google and honest company, how these core values come into play for your customers. Your core values show them that you are worthy of supporting. Now ideally, you want to know your target market, who you're trying to sell to, and cater your core values to make sure you're meeting their needs and you're speaking to them. You want your core values to be things that they care about as well. So obviously, core values should resonate with and attract your target market. Now let's take half a step back from core values and just look at what is a value anyways. So a value in general is a person's principles or standards of behavior. One's judgment of what is important in your life. And you can obviously have core values for yourself as well. So for your business, your core values are the same. There are standards of behavior and what's important for your business. And now we're going to jump into the fun stuff. 3. Core Values: Examples: Let's look at Google, one of the biggest and most well-respected businesses in the world. Here are there ten core values? I would recommend having a smaller list. But if you can go up to 10, I would do from three to 10. Three is a really nice, small, short, concise list that people, including your customers and employees will be able to remember. Here there are 10 values, focus on the user and all else will follow. And that's a fantastic first core value. Also, we will talk about structuring your core values, making sure the most important is first. And they believe on focusing the user. And this is a great guide for employees. And something important to display to customers because customers are going to believe that they're being first at Google, that everything is built for them. For employees, they look at this and think, when they're creating a new product, are they just trying to spike revenues or are they really focusing on the user and what they want? Which is the top core value and the top thing they should have in mind when creating a new product or service. So there are other core values. It's best to do one thing really, really well. Fast is better than slow. Democracy on the web works. You don't need to be at your desk to need an answer. You can make money without doing evil that were made me chuckle. There's always more information out there. So that one's really important. Just speaking to not settling for what you believe, but searching for more information. The need for information crosses all borders. You can be serious without a suit. This helps them establish that laid back style where they have ping-pong tables and people can bring their dogs to work. This really speaks to their corporate culture. And great, just isn't good enough. So they want to be better than great. Now let's take a look at honest company's core values. Create a culture of honesty. Obviously it's in the name, but you still want to repeat it here. In the core values. Make Beauty outperform. Service matters, which speaks to having a bigger goal than just business, which would really speak to their employees and just them being involved outside of work in causes. Sustained life, be accessible. This one really speaks to costumers and just saying that their employees are going to be accessible and it comes to customer service. They're going to be attentive to their needs. Pay it forward. And the last one is fun. Last example we're going to look at is sales forces core values. I really like their structure here and this is one that I create. I create similar core values for clients who hire me to create their core values for them. So they have four core values and then they explain their core values. So they are trust, Customer Success, Innovation, and inequality. So trust, nothing is more important than the trusted relationships we have with everyone in our oh, Hannah, I think just means their environment, Customers Success. Our growth is based on mutual success. When our customers and our employees grow, we grow. Innovation. Thinking differently is in our DNA. Our technology empowers all trailblazers to innovate and equality. We respect and value people of all backgrounds together, we create a more equal workplace and world. Now as you can see, the descriptions take the core values a step further. Well, any company could say, trust is important to us. Sales force here specifically tells you how it applies to them in a kind of guides their employees on how to incorporate trust into what they're working on. So what can your core values include? As you can see from those examples, they're kind of all over the place from fun to trust. Here are some other examples of common core values. Charity, creativity, collaboration, ethics, growth, professionalism, safety and security and transparency. Transparency is one of my favorite ones to use for my own company. And also others. 4. Core Values: Project Walkthrough : So It's project time. I want you to go ahead and download the worksheet. You can find that in the project section of this course. In the project, you will complete your company's core values. And we're going to take four main steps here. The first is we're going to free write. And this may be a little uncomfortable for you, but it's going to be quick and easy. Don't worry about it. We'll get through it together. So you're going to free write, then seek and find. And we'll discuss that when we get there, trim and reorganize and explain your values, which we saw in the sales force example, where they explain each of the core values that they chose. So step one is free, great. If you haven't ever heard of free writing, basically all it is is setting a timer and writing for that entire time. Even if something isn't coming to your mind, you just push through it, you keep writing. Now we're going to use a prompt. In your prompt is writing what your business believes in. And if you kinda get stuck on what your business believes in, just writing about that in the five minutes. You can also talk about how you're different and what you want to be for your employees, what you want to be for your customers, some of those other things, just write as much as possible. And on that worksheet, I give you an example of a five-minute for you, right? I did on this specific topic, so you can see my example. So you're gonna write for five minutes and then you're not going to stop until your time is up. So if you want to go ahead and pause this, and you should pause this, go ahead and do your free write. I'll give you a chance to pause now. All right, after your free write is done, it's time to highlight key phrases. So go through that block of text and look for key phrases. Look for things that look like core values. And you'll be able to look at my example to see the ones that I was able to highlight what I thought was important. So go ahead right now, look through your free write and highlight those phrases that stick out to you and feel like they'll resonate with what you're looking for, the culture you're trying to build in your company. What's your employees will find to be important and what your customers are looking for. All right, after that, you're going to list those key phrases. So whatever you highlighted, go ahead and take those and put into a nice bulleted list. You can do that on a piece of paper or in a Word document or on the worksheet that I provided. Step number four is trim and reorganize those phrases. So as you can see from my free write, some of those phrases are a little too long and they might not make sense for your core values. Try to shorten those, take out unnecessary words. And you can also reorganize the phrases. Remember we talked about putting the most important first, like google, prioritizes the user first and then everything afterwards. Started thinking about how you're going to reorganize this list to put what's most important to your business first. So if you're in banking or anti virus software, you might want trust or security first because that's what's most important to your clients. So after you're done with that, we can move on to step 2. Step 2 is seek and find. Now just one example of a website that has a lot of core values to look through is this core values You can also just Google common core values or list of core values to find a list to go through. Now, this is an important step because you might not commonly think of core values that are going to be important to your business, especially if you're a little new to the industry, if it's something you haven't been working in for decades. So go to a list, look through these and pick out ones that you think might represent the core values that you want to have, be part of your business. And after a while, looking through the list, write down any values that resonate with you. And you will have a chance to obviously trim this list again. But for right now, pick any that you feel resonate with you. In step 3, it's time to trim again and reorganize. So you might have a list of just four or five core values. You might have a list of 40. It's time to trim those down. And what you want to look for while you're trimming is what's most important to you because you're a big part of your business, your customers and your employees. And this is also probably a good time to look at the core values of your competitors. Now if you have smaller competitors, they might not have core values listed. But a lot of businesses do. I think you'd be surprised. So I'd go ahead and search in Google the name of your competitors so that business and then core values and see what pops up. Definitely don't copy what they have. Just use it as an example. See how many they list, see which ones they let us see the order they list. This will just help you have a little bit more information when you're creating your final list. So go ahead and trim your values three to ten. And then the next step you're going to take is reorganized that one more time. Make sure it makes sense top to bottom, and that at the top is the most important core value. Step number four is explain your values. And if you need help with this, I would look back at the Salesforce example. All you're doing here is you're elaborating on each of your core values. You're basically personalizing your core values for your business. You're telling people how you're going to do this differently, how you're gonna apply that core value to your business. So for example, you could still have a core value that another company has. For Honest Company, one of theirs was fun. You could still have fun as one of your core values. They don't have a copyright on that. But this is where you would explain how you incorporate fun into your business in a relevant way for your customers, employees. So I would go through to try to just do a sentence on that core value. You can do too. If you're doing like a longer About page or if you really think your customers employees will read it. But I would try to keep it as concise as possible. And then before you finalize your core values, I would get feedback. If you have an employee or a partner. And you know, some of your customers go ahead and send these to them, see what they think. Maybe they'll think a core values that you hadn't even thought of, it's really good to get a different viewpoint on this. So one example of elaborating on your core value, when I create it as honesty, we put honesty above profits to always deliver a sincere experience. And that's all you're going to be doing for these creating one to two sentences explaining it. 5. What to Do with Your Core Values: So congratulations, you have your core values created. I bet you didn't think it would be this easy. Or maybe it was harder than you thought. Regardless, congratulations, core values are extremely important to have. But what are you gonna do with them now, here are a few ideas. The top two, I would make sure you have it on your website About page. And I would also make sure that these are accessible for your employees. You want to remind them of these core values. One amazing company I've worked with before in Chicago catering company. They have their core values listed in every single workspace. So their employees can reference them all the time. They're never going to forget them because they're always there. So you could put it in the break room, private offices, storefront, even provide copies to employees, maybe in handbooks or hiring packet. And you could also share these on social media. You can use these as pieces of content. Share a core value with, with your audience, with your customers, and then explain why it's important. 6. Summary: Congratulations, you've just finished your core values. Now makes sure to submit your project in the project section of this course, I would love to give you feedback on your core values. You can also feel free to ask me questions and engage with me there. Once again, my name is Michael Lucas and I'm entrepreneurial writer. I love helping entrepreneurs like you create content for your business. Also make sure to check out my other courses. I help you create Mission Statements, vision statements, content for LinkedIn, and basically any other type of content that you need for your business. Thanks again for attending this course. Please make sure to also write my course and follow me if you're interested in seeing what other courses I have coming up. Thank you.