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Company values you don't like

As someone in HR, have you ever admitted that you didn’t like one of your company values?

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Not so much “didn’t like” but rather “thought was unnecessary”. For example, “honesty” as a value. Do we need to call that out? Does anyone want to work at a place that is dis-honest? So I feel that some values are just related to “be a good person” and don’t really help you align to something meaningful.

In general, I think companies are afraid to come out with a statement about what they believe and why. So maybe “courage” is a missing value :slight_smile:


I don’t think I’ve every actively said that I disliked a value, but I have been very vocal about feeling like we don’t actually live up to certain values. I agree with Michael in that values need to truly MEAN something to an organization or they’re just fluffy words on paper that no one lives. Let’s not forget that Enron’s values were Communication, Respect, Integrity and Excellence…


I dislike any value that sounds exactly like a value that every company has.

Customer first

Etc. Come up with a fresh way to state your case, or you’re already starting from a deficit.


I turned down a role at a company (that will remain nameless) because, as part of the process they shared their company values. It was less that I disagreed, but when they had something like 11 ‘management’ ones alone, I thought, ‘these are out of hand.’

And I agree with the above comment - meaningless ones are pointless - although even the ‘worst’ choices, truly lived, are better than great ones nobody can remember.

Oh, and I shared the below article with my present company (just before they agreed to overhaul them and make them personal. They had three on this list…

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Oh, man. I could go on about values that are undifferentiated. In order for values to be effective, I would argue that they need to be as differentiated as your brand. It’s easy to settle on average, but ones that are meaningful are harder to come by.

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