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4 Ways Core Values Build Muscles for Your Brand

by Jon Drachenberg

What are your company’s core values?

It seems like a simple question. And though most of us have a solid vision of what kind of experience we want to deliver, many of us would need to think about core values for a few minutes before answering.

Here’s a tougher question:

How would your employees answer the SAME question? Could they? According to a poll by Gallup, only 41% of employees even know what their company’s core values are.

Establishing core values within your organization is an important part of your customer experience mission. What values help drive your mission?

Here’s a great example.

Recently, I ordered some shaker bottles from Bodybuilding.com. And when they arrived, I was delighted to see one of their core values printed right on the box:

Our mission is not complete until the customer says, “Wow!”

This reminded me of our #cxwebinar from May, which was just a few days before. (Coincidence?) Our CEO Jeannie Walters spoke about the importance of establishing core values and communicating them throughout the organization.

What’s so great about this?

1. Versatility

This core value makes a powerful statement, but it’s a statement that can be true no matter what kind of transaction the customer is having, and it leaves plenty of room for change. For example, if Bodybuilding.com decided to stop selling retail products and focus exclusively on online services, this value could still be honored without deviation.

2. Internalization

Core value #6 is communicated to everyone who sees, touches, and interacts with the package. It’s a great way to remind employees what their company stands for. And when this package travels beyond Bodybuilding.com’s control and into the care of a shipping company, it’s kind of like saying “You can keep us happy by keeping our customers happy.”

3. Customer-focused

It’s not about being the best at what they do, it’s about the experience the customer has with the brand. And in this case, they want us to say “Wow!” …Which I totally did 😉

4. Bonus: Setting expectations

When kept internally, you could say “we didn’t actually promise this to anyone” allowing core values to be compromised when things are going a bit crazy, but making them public helps keep them on board with your mission. Bodybuilding.com translates their core values to a solid set of promises customers can expect in every part of the customer journey. Not only do they print them on the packaging, but Bodybuilding.com has all six of their core values published on their website:

  1. Always be truthful and honest in every aspect of business
  2. Give back to the people that you owe your success to
  3. Setting goals creates the roadmap to positive gains
  4. Great things will happen with a passion for competition
  5. It’s our goal to make the big idea bigger
  6. (My favorite!) Our mission is not complete until the customer says, “WOW!”

They even have a video to explain each one! If you have a minute, check out Bodybuilding.com’s core values page. It’s full of great examples to help you create or rethink your own!

Why are core values so important?

I know you’re going to be busy thinking about your own core values… so I’ll leave you with this quote from Bodybuilding.com’s core values page:

As we grow as a company, it has become more and more important to explicitly define the core values from which we develop our culture, our brand, and our business strategies. These are the core values that we live by…

I couldn’t have said it better myself.

Have a great week! And I do hope your customers have a great one too. 🙂


About Jeannie Walters, CCXP, CSP

Jeannie Walters CCXP CSP small square photoJeannie is an award-winning customer experience expert, international keynote speaker, and sought-after business coach who is trailblazing the movement from “Reactive Customer Service” to “Proactive Customer and Employee Experience.” More than 500,000 people have learned from her CX courses on LinkedIn Learning, and her insights have been featured in Forbes, The Chicago Tribune, The Wall Street Journal and NPR

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