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Defining company culture

Defining company culture and values involves articulating the beliefs, principles, and practices that shape the work environment, employee behavior, and company decisions. It's about creating a shared understanding of 'how things are done' within an organization. Here's a deeper look into defining company culture and values:


  1. Articulation of Core Values: Identifying core values that represent the essence of the company's identity. These values guide behavior, decision-making, and overall company direction.

  2. Behavior and Practices: Company culture is often reflected in everyday behaviors and practices within the organization. It includes how employees interact, how management communicates, and how the company responds to challenges.

  3. Incorporation in Policies and Procedures: The culture and values are often embedded in company policies, HR practices, and corporate governance.

  4. Communication and Reinforcement: Continuously communicating and reinforcing these values and cultural aspects through various channels and company activities.


  • Apple: Known for its culture of innovation, attention to detail, and an environment that encourages thinking differently. Apple's culture is deeply integrated into its product development, marketing, and customer service.

  • Netflix: Their culture emphasizes freedom, responsibility, and high performance. Netflix’s culture document, which went viral, highlights values like candor, selflessness, and excellence.

  • Zappos: Focuses on delivering happiness, both to customers and employees. Their culture is centered around exceptional customer service, a fun work environment, and a flat company hierarchy.

Fun Facts

  • Google's 20% Time: Google's famous policy of allowing employees to spend 20% of their time on personal projects contributed to a culture of innovation and creativity, leading to the development of products like Gmail and AdSense.

  • Patagonia’s Environmental Focus: Patagonia’s culture is heavily oriented towards environmental activism and sustainability, which is reflected in its product designs, supply chain practices, and even in supporting employees to participate in environmental causes.

  • HubSpot’s Culture Code: HubSpot created a 'Culture Code' slide deck that has been viewed millions of times. It outlines their commitment to transparency, autonomy, and inclusivity.

Defining company culture and values is more than just stating principles; it's about living them through every aspect of the organization. A well-defined culture and set of values can attract like-minded employees, foster a strong internal community, and guide the company through growth and changes.

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