In a world where brands jostle for attention in the crowded marketplace, something profound is regaining its significance: brand values. Beyond logos and tag lines, brand values are the compasses that guide a company’s actions and decisions. In this Frostbite, we explore the value of brand values, their evolution, and why they are more vital than ever in shaping brand identity.
The Heartbeat of a Brand: Core Values
Core values are not mere buzzwords plastered on office walls; they are the lifeblood of a brand. They represent the fundamental beliefs that drive behaviours and decisions within an organisation. These values were historically the lengthened shadows of founders, reflecting their vision and principles.
However, as companies grew and evolved, there was a tendency to tack on values without any authentic follow-through. Many employees knew core values only as “those words on the canteen wall.” The disconnection between these words and real actions eroded their significance.
A New Wave of Interest
In recent times, there’s been a rekindling of interest in core values as companies relearn how to use them effectively. The lessons from the past are clear: core values need to be authentic, organic, and closely aligned with the brand’s identity. They should emerge organically from the core purpose of the organisation and support its goals.
Quality Over Quantity
When it comes to core values, less is often more. The right number of core values typically falls between three and seven. Having fewer values ensures they remain focused and memorable, guiding actions effectively.
At Frost, we would typically try and distill your values down to just three. It keeps things simpler to manage and the brand more focused.
Connecting Values to Behaviours
To breathe life into core values, organisations need to connect the dots between these values and actual behaviours. This is where training programs and company leaders play a pivotal role. Stories and examples can illustrate how values are translated into actions, making them relatable and actionable.
Managers and HR departments should assess employee performance against these values. This not only holds individuals accountable but also reinforces the importance of these values in the daily operations of the company.
Why Core Values Matter More Than Ever
Cultural Alignment: Core values serve as a common language and a unifying force within an organisation, fostering a shared culture and purpose.
Customer Trust: In an age of skepticism, customers are drawn to brands with clearly defined values that resonate with their own beliefs. Trust is a currency that core values can build.
Employee Engagement: Employees want to be part of something meaningful. Core values provide a sense of purpose, making employees more engaged, motivated, and loyal.
Adaptability: Core values act as a North Star, guiding companies through change and uncertainty while maintaining their essence.
Differentiation: In a sea of competitors, authentic core values set brands apart, helping them stand out in a meaningful way.
The resurgence of brand values isn’t a mere trend; it’s a realisation of their enduring importance. They are the bedrock upon which great brands are built and the compasses that navigate them through the complexities of the modern business landscape. In an era where authenticity and purpose reign supreme, core values are not just words on a wall, they are the essence of a brand’s soul.