One of the main reasons that most small businesses fail is lack of focus on their core business values, their vision and their passion. Today I want to talk about your core business values, and why you need them.
Why do I need core business values?
The simple truth is that running a business is hard work. Yes, it can be rewarding, and yes, it can be good for the soul, and yes, for most of us it is a necessity. However the fact remains that in some sense or other it remains labour, or hard work. For every time that work is inspiring, there are other times when it can become mind-numbing. For every time that work can be rewarding, there are other times when it can become frustrating.
Ignoring this simple truth is stupid, and can lead to a dangerous downward spiral of unproductivity and frustration. if you only focus on the high points and joys of the job, the downside can rob you of the inspiration that the high points provide. On the other hand, if you focus too much on the downside, you lose sight of the inspiration that the high points can provide, and can’t possibly achieve them.
In order for your business to succeed it has to balance these extremes. You, as the business owner, have to find a way to strike an even balance between the ‘Pollyanna, sunshine and roses and unicorns’ attitude to work, and the ‘doom and gloom, rat in a cage’ attitude. Attaining, let alone maintaining, this balance on your own can be very difficult over the long haul, so this is why you need to establish your core business values.
What are your core business values?
A set of core business values can provide the buoyancy your business needs to get you through a rough patch, a tough job or a downswing in business. They can also act as a counterweight against unrealistic outlooks and expectations brought about by an individual success. Let me say that celebrating success is natural and normal, but ignoring the hard work it took to achieve that success is not.
A set of core business values provides this stability in a number of ways. Firstly, a set of properly discussed and shared business values can encourage the development of a business-wide culture, or attitude to tasks at hand. This culture encourages success, because everybody is rowing in the same direction, but it is also realistic about the ups and downs on the road to success.
Secondly, and possibly even more importantly, it encourages a culture of personal growth among your employees, which also helps to ensure the success of your business. This personal growth can take the form of developing the same realism about their jobs and their success.
Thirdly, your clients can see that your core business values promote a sober, steady and realistic attitude to your work, an attitude that is both professional and attractive to them. So your core business values will serve to attract your ideal clients, and repel the not-so-ideal clients.
Hopefully by now I have convinced you that you need a set of core business values, so do you have yours written out, displayed prominently in your business, and shared with your employees and clients? If not, why not?
If you need help in organizing your core values, passion and vision, download our free guide here. Enjoy!
Self-confessed sports tragic, I love most sports (except soccer) and can sit and watch elite sportspeople for hours.