Principle One: The Five Step Model- Defining the Values Your Organization Will Live By.
Values are the heartbeat of the organization. For some companies values seem unnoticed because there is nothing special about them and little attention has been put on them. For other companies, values have become a strategic weapon that distinguishes them from competitors and that customers notice and prefer. (Starbucks, Southwest, Zappos). Like it or not your organization has values which have been instilled and driven home (intentionally or not) by the behaviors and decision making of your leaders.
There is truth in the saying, “People don’t listen to you speak: They watch your feet”
The behavior of leaders determines the corporate culture. You could say that values and behavior are synonymous because a real value, one that has meaning, is noticeable and observable. In some organizations, values exist that may not have been consciously directed. Values may never have been communicated in an employee handbook, but people understand that the organization behaves in a certain way.
The first step in creating a values-centric culture is to commit to defining values and then leading with the values. You must establish a systematic process for defining and managing by values. Unless time is set aside to be intentional in the values forming process it is likely your corporate culture will reflect the values of your most significant leaders and even form sub-cultures by department. Creating a Values Blueprint ™ is an important part of the process and includes establishing a set of behaviors for each value. The Values Blueprint ™ then provides a foundation for hiring, rewarding, recognizing, and managing the performance of employees. The Key to creating a Values Blueprint ™ is defining them with behaviors.