One of our biggest challenges is how to be better than all the other companies out there. There are so many other options (many of which are great, we don't pretend to think we have the only good products in the world), how do we get people like you buy from us? After reading the book Traction and meeting with many business owners from all over, one thing to do is define our values (see our values along with our mission and vision statements in the About Us page). These values need to be unique to our company and brands, and we have to really believe in it.
Our first value is Win-Win-Win. Yes, three of them. The first two is for the people we work with: our customers, suppliers, employees. We should work together only if we both win. The third win is for the greater good: if you only win-win (2 wins) and screw the greater good, that doesn't work for us. The idea of products that claim or imply that they are environmentally friendly but actually don't work, or are still wasteful, helped inspire this value.
Our second value is Elegance: Simple and Effective. We want our products to actually work or give the benefit it promised. There are too many products out there that use questionable marketing tactics that don't actually work. We also want our products to be as simple as possible for people to use. We're not going to be working on spaceships to the moon anytime soon.
Two down, one more to go. One of my friends and fellow business owners ran me though an exercise to help me define our values. He asked me to think of all the people who I admire. I came up with some of my role models and famous leaders, but since I'm a big sports fan, he asked if there were any players I admired. That lit up the light bulb. I grew up in Wisconsin, so I'm a Bucks, Brewers, Packers, and Badgers fan (The Bucko brand was inspired Bucky the beagle, named after Bucky the Badger).
The Milwaukee Bucks are the defending NBA Champs, and our star player Giannis Antetokounmpo came to mind. He was the MVP of the league, played through a knee injury, and is an athletic freak of nature (appropriately nicknamed The Greek Freak). But he's so down to earth and humble. Even though he's a champion, he worked on improving his free throws and jump shots over the off-season. He brags about his teammates. At an autograph session, he got up and gave a little girl a hug because she drew him a picture.
We came up with Humble Greatness to add to our company core values.
We think our products and services are great, or we wouldn't sell them. But we're also humble enough to know we're not perfect and will continue to work on improving. We're also not going to do over the top marketing or claims, we're just going to be great and keep improving and have faith that people will reward us with their business.
And that is how The Greek Freak helped us define our core values.