Core values are a brand’s anchor. They are the thing that connects your target audience to you. The thing that guides your brand messaging, brand tone, … even you color palette! Core values are the key to strategic branding, so I wanted to give you a few tips to uncovering yours today!
I know it’s tricky, but give it a try! I find that the word we identify most with often has a lot to do with our core values. Steer away from blanket labels like “photographer” or “wife” here. Get more creative than that.
Was your word “friendly”?
Maybe your core values include relationships or vulnerability..
Was your word “artistic”?
Maybe your core values include creative expression or storytelling.
Was your word “influential”?
Maybe your core values include honesty or shepherding.
Now that you see how this works, come up with a few descriptions for yourself and scribble down what core values those words might be telling you.
You would be surprised how much we can learn by looking at what is lacking. What you want to see more of is often an indication of a core value. Take into consideration what YOU feel is lacking in your industry, whether it is fashion or life coaching, the wedding world or skincare.
Then, fill in the blank:
Here’s an example I filled out for myself when I started my design business.
“I think that my industry is really lacking designers who infuse their personal convictions and lifestyles into their work.”
Do you see how this lack statement pushed me to making “intentionality” one of my core values? I saw a lack of designers using their personal values and lifestyles in their business. And as the values of intentionality, sustainability, and slowness are important in my personal life, I carried them into my business. Hence, why I care so much about designing with core values in mind!
Try this statement out for yourself and see what values might be revealed in the process.
It’s no secret that personality tests are controversial and sometimes used inappropriately. But in my opinion, if they are used in a healthy way, they can be incredibly helpful! I fully believe they can be amazing tools for uncovering parts of ourselves we didn’t know were there and to put words to things we feel but can’t express (which is mega helpful for our core values!).
My final tip for uncovering your brand’s core values is to choose 1-2 of your favorite personality assessments (the Enneagram, Myers Briggs, Harry Potter house, DISC, zodiac, the color test, even a Buzzfeed quiz like “what kind of bread are you” would work!). Take them honestly and see what your results are!
Once you have your results, ask yourself:
What about this result makes me feel most known?
What is a natural strength for this personality and for me?
If I had to boil down this personality into 3 words, what would they be?
If you identify with a personality type, you will probably identify with its core values as well! Do you see recurring words, phrases, or themes in your evaluation? Those might be clues to the core values!
I am an Enneagram Type 4w3 and a Myers Briggs INFJ.
As my sweet friend & client, Madison Ashley, puts it “that basically means I’m all kinds of emotional (but I don’t mind it), it means creating things makes me feel alive, and it means I’m always down to sit down over coffee with a nice candle and hear your whole life story”. I couldn’t put it better myself.
I am a big time feeler! Being alone and creating is my jam. I have a romantic, nostalgic leaning soul but aesthetics for the sake of aesthetics don’t do it for me. I think and feel deeply, and so all things around me must feel meaningful too.
Ability to ask great questions and connect to others emotionally. The ability to put words to complex feelings.
Emotional, introspective, deep.
All these insights led me to my cores values of… intentional, soulful, connection!
And there you have it! Three of my tried and true tips to uncovering your brand’s core values. In order to lead your business from intentionality, try out these tips and see what you discover!
Let me know what you find my messaging me on Instagram! Excited to see what you find!
If you prefer talking these things through with a friend, I GOT YOU! Fill out my client application so we can book a free consultation call where we can dream about how core values could completely transform your business!