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Struggling to find great people? Why core values matter more than CV’s

6 April 2023
Mark Friend
Building a Business

In this two-part series of blogs we look at probably the biggest problem facing most small business – finding great people.

In the first blog we looked at why your vision can be a crucial element in attracting great people.

In this blog we will go deeper and explore why core values can matter more than CVs.

Finding the Right People

Let’s say you have a clear vision for your business which you have shared with your team but you still can’t find the right people.

The important question is what credentials are key to you for your right person – is it qualifications, experience or a good fit for your team?

Increasingly, companies are looking at fit as the key element in finding the right person.

What does the right person look like to your business?

If you have a person with the right attributes needed for a job then the probability is that you can train them to do what you require.

Most people are keen to learn new skills and develop in the right environment.

So, what do the right attributes look like to you?

The right person for one company will be very different from that for another company.

Fundamentally this comes down to what your core values are.

Choosing your Core Values

Core values are the three to four values that you and your team live by, not what you aspire to.

Amazon have 14 core values which their people should live by – but are they real or aspirational?

Your core values should be real.

Consider what key attributes you look for in your ideal team member: it might be a can-do attitude, client focused, personable, accurate, a self-developer, fast, honest, frugal, fun etc.. Decide what is important to you, document your key values and discuss them with your team.

It should be real, and you should be able to identify these values in your best people.

Using Core Values In your Recruitment Process

Once you have agreed on your core values they will act as your benchmark for the qualities you look for in new team members and how to assess existing team members for suitability.

If your core values are client obsession, speed, accuracy and honesty, then look for people who can share these values. Finding individuals with the right attributes is essential.

A new employee with a great CV but who lacks speed, accuracy and honesty would not be a great fit, and irrespective of how good they look on paper you are probably destined for disappointment.

Nature or Nurture?

You can usually teach your new recruits the skills they need for the job, it is much harder to change their behaviour if they do not share your core values.

It sounds obvious but if being friendly is a key attribute you have to employ friendly people.

If accuracy is essential you need people who like getting things done right first time.

From our own experience certain characteristics can’t be taught, they are either there or they are not.

For our own business we look for individuals who will be client focused, open with colleagues, take pride in their work and who look for opportunities to grow and develop.

Once you have agreed your core values you can frame your interview process to look for them by asking the right questions.

Embedding Core Values In your Team

Core values can then be used to assess your team and help each team member with their progression.

It will be clear what attributes you are looking for in your ideal team player and you can therefore provide real clarity to each individual about what areas they need to work on.

Building a team which is as passionate about your business as you are may appear to be like the search for the Holy Grail.

However it is possible if you are persistent, open to new ideas, prepared to promote your core values over a good CV and willing to spend the time training and developing your own people.

It isn’t easy but seldom do you find anything in life worth achieving that is actually easy!

The right support for Business Growth

If you are passionate about creating a truly successful business which will provide you with the income to support the lifestyle you want and the discretionary time to enjoy it then please get in touch.

We will discuss with you the range of business growth advisory services we provide to our clients, including business planning (a one day session to produce a one page business plan to provide a clear plan to build your business) which includes a section on core values.

Alternatively we can also offer a separate service dedicated to doing a deep dive to discover your core values.

If you would like to find out more, please contact Andrew Grant or Mark Friend or call us 01634 731390.

Our services

If you would like to find out more about some of our services that might help you please take a look at our related pages:

Business advisory

Take a look at our other blogs on the topic of Business Growth

Increase Profits and Create Freedom with Business Advisory

How Do you know if your business is on the right track?

The content in this blog is correct as at 28th March 2023 See terms and conditions.

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