Wednesday, October 5, 2011

How I can Guess Your Company Values

Do you have company values? How did you decide what they are? Are they an idealistic view of who you want to become, or do they represent who you are today?

If I want to understand what a person values, I look at where they spend their time and money. Most people are protective of both and mindful of how they use both, and they are very quantifiable. The same is true with a business. If you want to understand what your company values are today, just make an honest accounting of where your company consumes its and its employees' time as well as how it spends its money.

If you don't like what you learn about what you value, then you can certainly change. But it will take discipline. Your employees, customers, and other stakeholders have become accustomed to doing business with you based on your values.

Key Take-Away:
You can make a conscience decision to allow your values to define you. But beware that most companies write their values based on who they want to be, not who they actually are. Those companies are letting their values determine who they are. With discipline, focus, training, and systems, you can define your values and, eventually, become them.

One you establish values and act in alignment with them, here are 7 Ways to Get More Value from Your Values, a recent article I wrote for American Express OPEN Forum.your small business as successful as it can be.