Company Culture Code, Mission Statement, Core Values: What’s the Difference?

What is the difference between Culture Code, Mission Statement and Core Values

Company culture code, mission statement, and core values. You hear these words thrown around a lot, but what do they really mean? And do you need them in your company?

To start, here is how CultureIQ defines each term:

What a Company Mission Statement Is:

A company mission statement is a clear and concise definition of what guides you as a company. An effective mission statement can serve as motivation for your employees by explaining your purpose and goals as a business.

Our mission: To enable any company to understand, manage, and strengthen their culture.

What Company Core Values Are:

Core values are the guiding tenets of a company. They are timeless, enduring, and intrinsically important. Core values support the company’s vision, shape the culture, and reflect the company’s identity. There are no universal core values; instead, a company must decide what principles it holds most important. For more information on how to come up with core values in your company, read our Guide to Defining Your Company Values.

Our values:

  • Be creative and resourceful
  • Treat ourselves and others with respect
  • Great people over great resumes
  • Understand metrics, but make human decisions
  • Be open to change and maintain flexibility
  • Celebrate and enjoy the journey

What a Company Culture Code Is:

Think of a culture code as the handbook of your company culture. It should include your mission statement, core values, how to live by your values, and any supporting context- including company traditions and additional shared beliefs. In other words, it should outline what culture means to your company and what this looks like.

Having a written culture code also comes in handy for training and recruiting. As I mentioned in a previous post, educating new hires about the company’s mission and values should be a key part of any onboarding process.

Here are some helpful visual examples:

Asana Culture Code

The Motley Fool Culture Code

Netflix Culture Code

The HubSpot Culture Code

Now to the second part– do you need these in your company?

Absolutely! At CultureIQ, we are strong advocates of living by your company mission and core values. In fact, mission and value alignment is a quality that is common to high-performance organizations. A culture code simply makes living by your mission statement and values more accessible and achievable.

Together, these elements can serve as a differentiating factor for a company– both internally with employees and externally with job candidates and customers. Additionally, your culture code provides a more tangible bonding point for employees, which contributes to a sense of belonging in and loyalty to an organization.

See how other companies create high-performance cultures. Download our free report.

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