Companies often make the mistake of talking about the “things” they value, versus framing values as actionable behaviors. Your vision should describe where you’re going, the mission explains why, and values depict how you are going to behave along the way. To provide a simple example:
I want to see a beautiful sunset from the highest peak of a mountain.
I will climb to the top of this mountain.
I will climb safely and slowly, and I will stop to help other climbers on the way.
Values help employees make instantaneous decisions about how to behave. They are critical to managing culture. Survey your employees to see if they know your company mission, vision and values. If they can’t remember, then it’s probably not a meaningful part of their day-to-day experience at your company.