A few years ago I read a book called “Delivering Happiness” by Tony Hsieh. He was one of those behind the success of Zappos shoes.
“Who?” you say? Well they are a US outfit that Amazon purchased for 1.2 billlllllion dollars! (*best Dr Evil voice*)
In Zappos they developed a set of core values.
Now I’ve seen this before. The corporation that I worked for before I was a photographer did it and the values were meaningless to me.
Tony encourages companies to build their own value set. Zappos even publish theirs onine. http://about.zappos.com/our-unique-culture/zappos-core-values These guys really live their values at work and also at home.
Well we started pondering what our own values were and what we brought to our business. It was quite a ponder and took us many weeks (and a fair few bottles of wine!) but we got there. Actually it was quite a cathartic exercise as it now allows us freedom to focus on things through this prism. We did borrow from Zappos here and there. These values are pretty much how we live our lives and key elements we want to bring to our business.
Because Zappos found that publishing their values to the world helped them. Well why not?!
This is what we came up with. This is what you’re dealing with when you hire us to do photography for you.
- Family comes first. This is the top of all our values. Everything we do is for our family & all the photos I take are for families both now and in the future.
- Treat clients like friends. We value friendship and wish to do as we would be done by so honesty, loyalty & doing the right thing are important.
- Be passionate. Not only am I an old romantic but I don’t believe in just “going through the motions”: be passionate about it or don’t bother.
- Wow them. Let our passion help us to wow our clients, to exceed their expectations, over deliver, surprise them.
- Be quirky. Why be boring? Life should be fun. Be a bit quirky, creative, eccentric.
- Grow organically. There is no point risking all that we have built so grow slow but grow steady. Many new clients we hope will come to us from current ones.
- Keep things simple. Whether it is a process to book someone, how I edit an image or design an album. Keep it streamlined & smooth – avoid the over complicated stuff I used to have to deal with.
- Support the small guys. Where we can we support the small businesses. Buying quirky, artisan, handmade items suits all of the above values. Buy local. Make friends.
- More haste less speed. I hated the corporate rush that went nowhere. A steady river still reaches the sea. Phlegmatic & tranquil progress, calm and unhurried but always moving forward. Glaciers can move mountains.
That’s it. Our 9 core values. If you ever feel we are falling outside of them feel free to pull us up and point it out because this stuff matters to us!