If you are interested in building a culture strong enough to create a competitive advantage, you have to be constantly be reminding the team what your core values are. This goes way beyond putting them on a poster and talking about them in your daily and weekly huddles. I’ve talked about it before in a previous blog post, 3 “R & Rs” for Building a Strong Company Culture. Take a look at it; that will get you started.
Now, I want to take the idea one step further.
What do you do when someone just isn’t getting a core value and that’s causing problems?
Core values aren’t something you can manage really. Team members have them, or learn them and live them, or they don’t. So my suggestion, from Pat Lencioni, is this. For the person who just isn’t getting it and violates a core value, take time to remind them what the core value is. Then remind them of your expectation on how to live that value the next time a similar situation comes up. Also, remind them why this is important. Do it in a matter-of-fact manner. Keep reminding them each time it comes up. And re-reminding them, and re-reminding them.
One of three things will happen:
- The team member will get sick of all the reminders and change the behavior.
- The team member will get sick of all the reminders and start looking for another job.
- You will get sick of doing all the reminders and decide to free up their future.
I think it’s a pretty good way of communicating the importance of your core values. Remind! Remind! Remind! until someone gets sick of all the reminders.