How Clear Values Can Strengthen Your Business
How Clear Values Can Strengthen Your Businessback

Thinking big, being bold, marketing and financial savvy: All these are required to make the leap from small business to high-growth business. But what keeps all these pieces together?

A clear purpose drives everything you do, according to Randy Joy Epstein, business growth consultant. Epstein advises companies to:

  • identify what your purpose is
  • be consistent in everything you do, from customer service to vendor relationships to how you treat your employees
  • make sure everyone in your company knows your purpose and walks the walk

For Daytner Construction Group (DCG), a high-growth, woman-led business, purpose includes consideration of profit, people, and planet in ways that take the company to ever higher levels of success while helping its people be their best and protecting the planet.

Its purpose, “unleashing possibilities for a thriving culture that sustains commerce, people, and the environment, without compromise” is the North Star that guides every decision made by the company.

Both employees and management know what the company stands for; they hammered out the statement together, carefully choosing every word. Everyone knows why they do what they do, which is the key to greater success for the company and its employees.

DCG is a hard-driving, successful player in the construction industry, managing and constructing multi-million dollar projects. It is one of Inc.’s 2011 500 Fastest Growing Companies. Its founder, Theresa Daytner is a semifinalist in the Ernst & Young 2012 Entrepreneurial Winning Women competition. (Finalists are not yet named.)

You don’t typically think of a construction company as socially conscious. Perhaps this one is because it was started and built by a woman while she raised six children.

In Daytner’s view, her company succeeds because it values people and planet as well as profit. Each word in its statement of purpose has meaning that guides decision-making, client relations, employee benefits, and long-term plans.

Draytner is mindful that the company is a business, first and foremost. “If you are not successful as a business, you can’t do the rest of it.” But the business success Draytner strives for is long-term and sustainable. It requires looking beyond what is to what could and should be.

She uses a Golden Rule approach in both client and employee relations. Because she is a working mother, she bases human resource policy on what she herself needs. DCG health insurance, for example, is more generous than in other companies she has worked for; well-baby visits and birth control are both covered.

Flexible work schedules are developed as needed to help people cope with changes in their lives. The result of this flexibility, Daytner says, is a team on which everyone is doing their best in the job that they do best.

And, as a triple-bottom-line company, DCG is also mindful of the environment, from LEED certified buildings to consideration of the carbon footprint in their own operations.

Sounds good but does it play out in the construction business? Yes, it does.

  • DCG attracts very highly motivated people that don’t need “babysitting.”
  • Top-tier talent attracts clients.
  • Ethical values attract clients. More businesses, including some big box stores, are looking at their whole supply chain. Because of its adherence to triple bottom line values, DCG is at the front of the line for construction projects for other socially responsible companies, such as Trader Joe’s and Whole Foods.
  • Because of her values, Draytner is growing her business by providing more professional services earlier in the life of a project. Instead of just building things planned by others, the company is now helping plan, budget, and write the RFP so it can guide clients toward newer, greener ways of building.

Why do you do what you do?