What Do Values Have To Do With It!?

What Do Values Have To Do With It!?

by elainesuess

No, the title is not about Values and IT, as in computers, but Values and It as in work. You know — alignment, how you show up every day, what you believe, what is at your core, how your values are aligned with your work culture, and how engaged you are at work.

When was the last time you assessed your own personal values to consider the part they play in why you wake up in the morning, and how they impact your work?

When was the last time your company focused on the values demonstrated in your current culture at work, and how they align (or not) with the desired culture of the company?

“Our values reflect what is important to us. They are a shorthand way of describing our individual motivations. Together with our beliefs, they are the causal factors that drive our decision-making. Understanding our values helps us to understand why we may act or react the way we do. Living your values can make you feel in balance.”      Richard Barrett

Values and the Bottom Line

The values conversation is not just about personal values, but also about leadership, a desired culture and the bottom line. On page 12 of Deloitte’s Culture of Purpose report, it’s clear that executive and employee views of purpose as part of their business culture vary widely. Not only do they differ there, but 18% of employees say leadership does not set an example by living the organization’s purpose.

Shared values at work are not just a “nice to have,” but impact the business in important ways. In Corporate Culture and Performance, John P. Kotter and James L. Heskett show that companies with strong adaptive cultures based on shared values outperformed other companies by a significant margin.

Research by Rosabeth Moss Kanter from Harvard tells us “that companies that are innovative, profitable, and responsible hold widespread dialogues about their values.” She goes on to say as a result:

 “It is not the values themselves that make the difference.  It is the conversation” about the values.

Start the Conversation

If you’re ready to start the conversation, take the free, online assessment offered by Barrett Values. There are two exercises included in the free assessment that will help you decide on a pathway forward to live your values more fully, and align them with your work and your culture (or both!)


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