The execution of my duties will be swift and violent when required, yet guided by the very principles that I serve to defend.” -- The Navy SEAL Creed

Loyalty. Integrity. Honor. Perseverance. Humility. Without these guiding values, the Navy SEALs would not exist. Likewise, in business, your principles and values should be so ingrained in your actions that without them, your company would cease to exist.

When we started our first company, my business partner and I were so driven by growing the business that we neglected to establish the core principles that should be the foundation of every company. Years later, when we realized that our foundation was weak, we sat down and really focused on what defined the culture we were trying to establish. Now, every decision we make, every person we hire, and every client we bring on is aligned with these values.

Here are some things you should think about when thinking about your company’s core values:

Be authentic
Recruit wisely
Share with clients
Live the values
Published on: Mar 7, 2013
The opinions expressed here by Inc.com columnists are their own, not those of Inc.com.