REI’s core purpose is to inspire, educate and outfit for a lifetime of outdoor adventure and stewardship…We believe that it’s in the wild, untamed and natural places that we find our best selves, so our purpose is to awaken a lifelong love of the outdoors, for all.
Recreational equipment co-op REI has remained true to its values since its founding in 1938. The co-op model allows them to invest a significant portion of profits back into their employees and community through employee profit sharing and donations to nonprofits dedicated to the outdoors.
Since 2015, all REI stores close on Black Friday — perhaps the biggest shopping day of the year — so employees can enjoy time outdoors with friends and family.
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The company states “We give all our employees a day off to #OptOutside with family and friends on the busiest retail day of the year. We continue this tradition because we believe in putting purpose before profits.”
Staying true to their core beliefs has made REI not only a great place to work, but has also made them a favorite brand of both new and experienced outdoor enthusiasts.
Now that you’ve seen what core values look like at other companies, you may be wondering how to create and implement your own. While defining your core values may be a hefty task, there are a few simple steps that will help you develop and iterate your own.
1. Check in with your team.
A quick way to get started is to consult your founders or executive team. They’ll often already have a vision for the company, its values and how they would ideally like everyone to work together. Once you have that framework, you can work on fleshing out your organization’s core values.