B097: How to define your core values

By January 17, 2020The Simplifiers Podcast

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How would you define your core values? What’s that?? You haven’t written these down yet? No biggie, I’ve got you covered. 

It’s been a really fun process to take all six core values of The Simplifiers and break them down, one by one, into six episodes on the podcast. I hope this gives you greater insight into what we believe in as a team, as a brand, and how this translates in everything we do to serve our customers, clients, and audience. People just like you!

Just a reminder…

  • your mission statement is your WHY… why do you exist in the marketplace, who do you serve and what problem do you aim to solve.
  • your vision statement is your WHAT’S NEXT… where do you see your brand heading in the next 5 years ahead and the vision of how you’re going to make a positive impact on the world in a bigger way in the years to come. 
  • …and your core values are WHAT you believe in… if done right, this drives all decision-making in every aspect of how you run your business. It’s what you stand for and is at the heart of everything.

Earlier this week, I spoke to Laura McKowen all about how to overcome addiction, which may be a strange thing to link together to defining your company’s core values, but really it isn’t. Hear me out.

From hearing Laura’s story and reading her book, “We are the Luckiest,” I started to realize that when her own addiction to alcohol was starting to become this big, massive thing in her life, it took over everything. 

Lies to cover up lies to cover up other lies. 

Deception, shame, embarrassment, guilt, all of it was starting to become her norm… swirling and swirling until it consumed her work and life. 

And that got me thinking… when your addictions overwhelm you like this, and your life is no longer recognizable to yourself… your core values will have disappeared as well.

No core values, no ability to discern when your Thing has become a problem. 

And without your core values, if you have an addiction (big or small) whether it’s overworking, or sugar, or binge watching junk TV, or something way worse… it’s going to start to take over. 

On the flip side, when you’re aligned with your core values, your behaviors start to change. You make better choices every single day and ultimately, your life (slowly) and your business starts to move towards what it is you truly want. And that’s good news.


Here are 3 simple things to consider when you define your own core values:


  • What values are essential to your work and life? 

As in, what kind of a team and company do we need to be to serve our clients and deliver our world-class products and services?

how to define your core values

  • What values were necessary when you attained your most recent big accomplishment? 

Whether it was determination or grace, grit or discipline, think about the last three greatest accomplishments you’ve had as a company and what key traits you and your team needed to possess in order to achieve these milestones.

how to define your core values

  • And alternatively, what values were pushed aside in your most recent failure? 

It may seem strange to talk about failures here, but it’s a worthy exercise. Looking back at your last three total blunders, what core values did you compromise or push aside, which resulted in things going sideways?

how to define your core values

Once you’ve got a list of 10-20 core values written down, you’ll need to take some time to distill it down to 5-6, if possible. Remember, simplicity is key. So take the time to evaluate which are the most important to you as a business leader and to you as a brand. 

CLICK HERE if you need a list of sample core values to help you kickstart things.

As Mahatma Ghandi said, “Your beliefs become your thoughts. Your thoughts become your words. Your words become your actions. Your actions become your habits. Your habits become your values. Your values become your destiny.”

The Simplifiers’ Core Values, simplified:

B043: How to embrace simplicity

B044: How to create collaborations

B045: How to appreciate thoughtful details

B046: How to fail fast & learn faster

B095: How to embrace integrity & determination 

B096: How to make a positive impact on the world 

One final whisper

The beauty of doing this work is that you also uncover new things about yourself along the way: 

  • where your boundaries lie now, 
  • what has been trampled in the past, and 
  • who you are (really) in this chapter of your life. 

Remember, as a business owner, you get to decide all of this. You have the power to choose again and define your core values.

So set a 7-minute timer, pull out your journal, carve out the time to do this important, deep work. Jot down some ideas on what you stand for, what you believe in, and no matter what, 100%, what you value all the way to the core.

You can do this, I believe in you.

It’s time to SIMPLIFY.

If this thought of the day inspired you…

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Thank you!

Show credits: Suzen Marie, our Podcast Editor. Jeffrey Lynn, our Video Editor. Lyden Yardley, our Show Notes Editor, Kristin Castillo, our resident Superhero, and Manminder Athwal, our Blogger. Aubri Nowowiejski, Chris Justice and George Mills, our advisory board. And I’m your host, Mary Baird-Wilcock. Thank you so much for joining us.

As always friends, keep things simple.

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