Building Culture Through Values and Behavior

November 8, 2019

From blogs and events to client meetings and interviews, we talk a lot about core values. They’re central to planning for clients’ futures, so it’s hard not to. But at a recent event, a guest and new friend of the firm’s, asked a great question: What are Wymer Brownlee’s core values as a company? Thanks to a unified and intentional leadership team, not only could I answer his question but also I could elaborate on how our team members live them.

Last year, I was inspired by this Focus 3 Podcast to go beyond identifying our company’s values and build a more robust “culture playbook.” The playbook outlines specific behaviors and outcomes that naturally follow when we live our values. As Tim Kight wisely says, “Culture is built one conversation at a time, over time,” so we wanted the team at Wymer Brownlee to have a clear understanding of how they can contribute daily to our culture. Here’s where we landed:

Make it matter. It’s our job to help clients prioritize what matters most and understand the significance of the financial decisions they make. We’ll always do right by them – whether it benefits Wymer Brownlee or not. And we’ll communicate honestly, listen intently and work tirelessly, just like our founder Deane Wymer did. If we do these things, the outcome will be that our business is all about relationships, not transactions.

We, not me. Every team member fills a valuable role in serving clients well, and when clients are happy, we all share the credit. We expect you to be humble, treat each other with kindness and focus on results rather than recognition. Unique skills, hearts, attitudes and a spirit of collaboration make us all better together.

Status quo is not our M.O. Give your best every day and expect it of your coworkers. Look for ways – big or small – to exceed clients’ expectations by going above and beyond the call of duty. Let them see the warmth, friendship, humor and purpose that makes Wymer Brownlee uncommonly enjoyable. If we do, people will find every experience working with us is better than expected.

Culture might seem like a warm and fuzzy or unimportant topic, but it doesn’t simply make for a great place to work (one of the best places to work in Oklahoma, in fact). It’s crucial to a successful business for two reasons:

  1. “[Clients] will only love a company if the employees love it first,” according to Simon Sinek.
  2. “Corporate values are not BS. They help employees make good decisions when founders are not in the room,” according to Alexis Ohanian.

When people make decisions that align with their company values and love where they work, you can tell. It always comes out in service. So, if you want to know what the companies you work with stand for, be like our new friend Josh and ask.

 

Blog by Andrew Gaskill, Financial Services Manager.

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