For your company’s values to be truly effective, they need to be understood and internalized by every member of the organization. But contrary to what some leaders believe, this doesn’t mean that values should be something that every employee is expected to memorize or blindly accept.

Sometimes values will really resonate with your team members and they’ll accept them wholeheartedly. But not always.

Instead, the most effective method to get every employee to truly embrace your values is to make sure when they’re hired, that your values are already a good match with theirs.

The Importance of Hiring for Values

It goes without saying that it’s always important to hire people with the appropriate credentials. But a good leader is one who recognizes that people are more than their resume.

It’s doesn’t require a huge stretch of the imagination to picture three candidates, all with roughly equal training and skills, but who ended up in your industry for different reasons and are driven by very distinct motivations. So why not make sure you pick the candidate whose passions and drivers most closely match yours?

Think About Values When Designing the Interview Process 

Companies with the strongest cultures are those that tailor the interview process with their culture in mind. Create questions based on scenarios that cut to the core of who each candidate is, and what their motivations of are.

In other words, instead of focusing primarily on their skills and background, try to gauge whether they’re going to fit with your culture and your values. Will they contribute to and support your values? Or, are they somebody who could disrupt your culture?

Be Clear About Who You Are

Hiring for values is often a mutual process. Most people want to work for a company that are aligned with their values. Be extremely clear about who your company is. Emphasize your values and mission with your explanations and your questions. There should be no question that you expect your eventual hire to reflect these. Oftentimes the candidates who don’t see themselves as a good fit will de-select themselves from the hiring process.

As a leader, the culture you create at your company will be a key factor to your success. So make the process so much easier for yourself by all employees fit in with your vision and values—right from the beginning.