The power of values in business and why you should give a damn

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Success is 1% vision and 99% alignment.

Jim Collins

 

We like to think of values as the best way to get people, teams and organisations aligned. Organisational alignment is not quite as sexy but it’s basically the same!

In short, your company values are the beliefs and principles that drive your business strategy. They impact the employee experience you deliver, as well as the relationships you develop with your stakeholders.

Having core company values will help you ensure all of your staff, from top leadership to entry-level, are working towards the same common goal, and share a bigger purpose. They need to be developed from within to be authentic to your company and employees.

We’re a values based organisation at Legend, here are ours:

We use these as decision-making filters’ for the day to day operation of the business — for example, recruitment, creating relationships with clients whose values align, and deciding which charities to support.

Make your values mean something

Maybe your business or organisation has already defined your values. Great! But are you truly living them?

Last year, the Harvard business review reported that only 35% of the strategy for the year was ever accomplished by the team. This lack of productivity was directly related to poor alignment of people — they didn’t know what the values and the vision were for that team, and the strategy was unclear.

Jim Collins, a very popular American baby boomer, has often quoted that success is 1% vision and 99% alignment — we have to optimise alignment to get the productivity we need to complete the work.

Talking about our values today is really about bringing our attention to our alignment. Who we are as a team, who we are as individuals, what do we want to do, how do you want it done, and what does success look like for us? If we’re all working in a way that is congruent with our vision, values and strategy, this alignment will bring out the best in us all. Conversely, if we ignore misalignment, ways of working that are not congruent for the team, values, and vision, the shit will hit the fan — probably sooner than you think.

If you need to define values for your business, or get your staff re-energised and aligned with your strategy, then we’d love to help! We have a chief enthusiasm officer at Legend, Catie Noble, and she lives and breathes values, vision, and strategy. Get in touch with her today.