09th December 2019 Written by Gerry Griffin

Image: Toby Lindsay and Gerry Griffin.For all organisations, irrespective of size, it has become 'fashionable' to have goals, visions and mission statements visible for everyone to see; customers and employees alike. However, someone has mischievously coined this 'fad': 'corporate graffiti'. From the behemoth, global organisation, to your local corner shop, any organisation will clearly portray its values at its forefront, as though they were written on the walls; yet employees simply walk by and ignore them, more often than not, day by day.

However, as we point out in today’s podcast, if we can get the balance of values and leadership right, we can successfully drive key elements of the business, in order to encourage the participation and interest of fellow colleagues.

Firstly, values can drive behaviour. We live in a dynamic, fast-moving, changing world and modern organisations reflect this. However, unless we’re able to keep up and capitalise on these elements, we risk being disintermediated by our competition, or more efficient ways of delivering the same task.

Organisations need to ensure that their values are current, but also capable of integration into our already busy world. Simultaneously, organisations need to ensure that they maintain a red thread throughout all of these activities, otherwise the solidity of their structure will come crumbling down and fall behind the changing world around us. Being held together by a series of disparate activities will discourage the value of solidity and structure being held together by coherent visions and an ultimate game plan.

A coherent, value-based approach can help to make a difference to an organisation both internally and externally. In today’s society, we now see millennials establishing themselves in leadership positions. This validates the importance of values and demonstrates their existence as the key for attracting and retaining great talent. Values have a way in which you can, if deployed properly, attract and retain the best talent out there.

When asking an individual why they are where they are, in regard to their work and business, rarely do we find ‘financial compensation’ at the top of their checklist. From an external perspective, values can also help an organisation establish consistency in its stance on key topics of our time; such as gender and ethnic diversity, the environment and other major issues and discourse of the modern world. Values are therefore a compass which we can calibrate, determining where our end destination is and also how far we’ve travelled towards, or away from that end goal. These are very important KPIs against which the leadership itself can actually be judged.

The point we’re making with this podcast is that whilst we necessarily need to express our values as words and design and distribute them in a particular fashion; the real value is how they get embodied, lived and actioned and how you choose to personally react to them. Values are not just ornamental, they are action-oriented and can truly design and deliver huge organisational benefits, as long as we’re not cynical about them.

Listen to our latest podcast here where our expert in Leadership, Management & Organisational Development, Toby Lindsay has been catching up with Gerry Griffin, founder of SkillPill, our leadership and management learning partners, to talk more about the importance of a Value-based approach to leadership, part of our Meaningful leadership #InConversationWith Series.

Contact us today for how we can help your organisation with all of your learning, management and organisational development.