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Values that stick

Reading Time: 3 minutes

Sticky notes for values

Before you can begin to evaluate for core values in a job candidate, a company needs to actually have values and purpose. Startups often hold the unique power to meld and mesh their values as the culture evolves; for larger companies, this can be more difficult (but not impossible).

One of our podcast interviewees, Social Tables’ Vice President of People and Operations Sam Cicotello, told us how they came up with their core values:

“Core values are the key to any organization. Very early on in Social Tables’ history there were three employees and an intern. Dan, our CEO, realized that and so they all got into a room together and they came up with what are now known as our cultural pillars.

Those are just four pillars that we built our workforce on. To have values that truly match and grow with an organization, I think you have to revisit those frequently. So about two years ago, everybody sat down with sticky notes and asked the question: ‘What are our values and how do we live them?’

They took a week and put sticky notes all over the walls. They ended up with a hundred plus stickies on the walls of ‘This is who we are,’ ‘This is what matters to me,’ and ‘This is what’s important,’ and at the end of the week, they all fit very nicely into a couple of categories.”

What’s driving your company?

Whether you’re still figuring out what matters to your organization and team or you’ve figured it all out, you probably have stories to tell (like the hotel service team that TP’d a guest’s room or the team member who keeps coming back). What stories are you telling internally and to candidates? Let me know at or get some ideas from us on how to make your core values stick.