Values and Your Business

When you research business values in any business journal or strategy literature on corporate culture, you are told that values in the business world, are standards of conduct that a company wants each member of the organization to follow in all that it does.

What do you think make good values? Should we bring our own core values into the business world? If so why?

Which of the two below statements do you think describes your business – hover on the images to hear both sides of the story?

Hover on the images to experience the different cultures

Example 1: Everyone moving in the same direction

“It was clear from the start this organisation had really strong values, it felt like one big team.

The senior leaders were open and approachable. It was clear they were determined to establish a corporate culture in which values were formed by the whole business and were considered especially worthwhile and important to the people within that business.

The values were instilled as early as the recruitment process. They were embedded into employees through the example set by their supervisors, through Learning and Development programs and through structured periodic reminders communicated to them in activities such as the appraisal system.
This attention to detail really did shape what I felt was a progressive organisation with growth in every aspect of the business.

I understand there are no two cultures the same and no one size fits all.

There are some great examples out there of strong recognizable values that have been established from the birth of the business, businesses that have got to a certain point of growth and wants to develop a culture that provides a strong platform for its inevitable growth and businesses that have been established for 25 years are and are only starting to think about cultural values for the first time. I suppose there is no right time to start to consider cultural change.

That said this business has done things right and it really makes a big difference. For this business and the stage it is in, the steps that are in place are exactly the right steps to take & show signs of a successful progressive business model.”

Example 2: Everyone is not quite on the same page, but why?

“The culture just turned toxic. Because the values weren’t really aligned or communicated right, it really was an unpleasant environment. And results suffered.

The senior leaders spent what seemed like forever in committee meetings, deciding on key phrases that they personally feel describe the business of today and where it is going.

But what was overlooked, are the various levels of non senior stakeholders within the organisation and how to use their opinion and knowledge as the key to unlocking a meaningful cultural environment.

At times leaders were so misaligned that it seemed like a constant battle resolving conflict.

They neglected the story behind the past principles – the heritage that has led to present day success & could provide a future drive of the business.

But if your workforce do not feel involved in the process & do not connect with the organisations past in the first instance, how can they feel a part of a truly successful representation of the business future?

The attempted values were never personally engaging in the beginning. They didn’t mean enough to the senior leaders of the business. Thus, the senior leaders did not invest the time required to communicate these values correctly to the driving force of the business, its people.

Subsequently the values are not embedded correctly in the infrastructure. It just seemed that toxic people in the business were on the increase. One or two individuals who have their own agenda at play try to sabotage any good intentions and the hard work dissipates.

This led to a culture of poor morale, inadequate communication, low staff retention amongst other issues – ultimately costing the business time and money and its best people.

In short they failed to achieve the simple goal that all values are meant to achieve – which is to provide a foundation to bring people together to improve and grow the organisation.”