Layers of the company culture onion

Values without expected behaviours are meaningless

Coming up with a set of values is not enough because the challenge with values is they are relative, vague and open to interpretation. Therefore, the critical layer of the business culture onion to understand, is the founder’s behaviours. The founder’s values dictate what behaviours are required and what behaviours will not be tolerated. 

Behaviours have the advantage of being specific, defined, demonstrable, are visible in action and therefore manageable. 

The link between values and expected behaviours is the key piece of the puzzle that many founders miss when trying to move their culture from implicit to explicit.

Deloitte Global Human Capital Trends 2016

12% of executives believe their companies are driving the right culture and 72% say they don't understand their culture

Company values & the associated expected behaviours

A list of company values is important, but that's only the outer layer of the onion