One business has found a simple formula to business success: involving staff in the creation of company values.
Coral Sea Property Management principal Shaun Podbury told RPM that involving staff in establishing the company’s values meant they became more invested in the business and understood the goals of the organisation better.
“If you want your team to perform at a particular level, they have to buy into your rules and they have to believe in your values,” he said.
This process has led to staff members sharing the same understanding and mindset as his own, according to Mr Podbury.
He explained: “I get enormous growth quickly because these kids put their decisions through the same filter I do and ask things like, ‘Why don’t we have handheld devices so people can sign leases on the go?’
“There are so many innovations that they've brought in because they understand the ‘why’ of Coral Sea, and they have great ideas that they make happen.”
Mr Podbury noted that although staff were initially nervous about contributing to the company’s values, input became easier as they grew more comfortable with the business and each other.
“For example, in our team rules and beliefs, one of the things missing was empathy, so one of our more attuned team members pointed out that it was damaging to our brand,” he said.
Mr Podbury said it’s not enough to simply decide on a company’s core values; they must be instilled into staff and reflected in everyone’s actions.
“One of the things that we do consistently is every two weeks we have a cultural breakfast where we go through something related to our values, our rules and our culture,” he said.
He also noted that aligning staff with the company’s core values has helped him recruit and retain the right kind of people for his business.
According to Mr Podbury, recruiting based on values is vital because you can teach somebody how to do something but not why they should do it.
“All I'm doing when I'm going through a recruiting process is actually taking someone through the stepping stones to discover if they truly hold similar values; because if they do, then they are so easy to train,” he said.
[Related: Hard work needed to build strong culture]