Are Your Values Adding Value?

A wise leader of any organization will spend significant time thinking through and carefully crafting organizational values. He understands as the team lives out these prescribed behaviors the organization is more likely to accomplish its mission.  While listing Core Values is a common practice, unfortunately living out core values is not.  In many cases organizational values are posted on a wall and forgotten or ignored.  In other cases the values are defined but no one is sure how they integrate into the daily life of the organization.  As a result the values lack the power and influence they’re intended to have.  So how do know if your values are adding value?

Here are four indicators that may help you find out.

Everyday language: You know your values are adding value when they become the common language that team members are using on a day-to-day basis. Keywords or phrases from your defined values are showing up in everyday conversations, meetings and in the way that others describe your organization. These words or phrases become insider language that your people understand and use to help move your organization towards the mission.  If you’re values are not showing up in everyday language it’s likely they’re not adding value.

Decision Making: Values can add a great clarity to your decision-making. Every decision you face has multiple options and the option you choose will either keep you on or get you off mission. Your values (I actually prefer to call them Core Behaviors) are a set of a pre-decided ways that you and your organization will behave.  Therefore if a decision doesn’t align with one or all of your values then you need to find an option that will.  These pre-decided behaviors are intended to keep you on mission.  If you’re not referring to your values in the midst of decision making then they’re not adding value.

Changed Behavior– Not everyone you bring into your organization automatically reflects your values.  That’s okay at the beginning but a clearly established set of values that are communicated regularly will overtime shape the behaviors of the individuals on your team.  This will bring greater alignment to the way people behave, think and make decisions in your organization.  If your values are not shaping the behaviors and decisions of individual team members they are not having their intended impact.

Clear Reputation – It doesn’t take too many touches for people outside your organization to quickly discern what you value.  Whether we like it or not what we value is highly visible.  This is why one of the leader’s greatest responsibilities is to manage and shape the corporate culture of his or her organization.  We do this by modeling and teaching the values/behaviors we expect.  When team members live out the values in daily activity others quickly pick up on “how we behave around here”.   And it’s those day-to-day expressions of our values that establish the reputation of our organization.  What is your church or company known for?  If you’re unhappy with the answer to that question then your values are not adding value.

What next steps do you need to take to ensure that your values are adding value?


Would you like to learn more about developing Values for your organization? Connect with an Auxano Navigator and start a conversation with our team.


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ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Mac Lake

Mac Lake

I am the Chief Launch Officer of The Launch Network, a new church planting network based out of West Ridge Church in the greater Atlanta, Georgia area. My role is to get The Launch Network up and running, networking with churches and planters to establish healthy church starts across the U.S. and the world. Our goal is to plant 1000 churches in the next 10 years. My passion is growing leaders for the local church. Every time I hear Bill Hybels say “The local church is the hope of the world” my heart comes out of my chest and it increases my sense of urgency for developing leaders who produce leaders.

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9 Posts Every Leader & Pastor Should Read | JoshuaReich.org — 02/05/16 3:50 am

[…] Are your Values Adding Value? by Mac Lake […]

Recent Comments
What happens when u dont have a meeting place any more. And u was forced out because the buliding wasnt available any more.
 
— Debra
 
If someone wants entertainment they're going to the wrong place. Church is not a place for entertainment...or in my opinion a barrage of coffee and donuts. Why are churches today bringing the world INTO them? Then there's the thing with children...age appropriate??? These little guys can pick stuff up in service. Besides Jesus said Suffer little children, and forbid them not, to come unto me: for of such is the kingdom of heaven. Mt. 19:14.
 
— Laurie
 
I love the intentionality here as well as the challenge to look at the data. That's missing so many times. I would like to offer a contrarian's take. Church members and regular attenders have so many ways to get information: Announcements, bulletins, social channels, relationships, and email being among the options. But brand new people are likely going to check out the website and that's it. It might be wiser for churches with limited time and resources to focus their website almost exclusively to guests. This group of people isn't looking for a calendar of events but wants to know about regular programs. They probably aren't interested in watching all of the messages but instead may want to preview one of the services. For the times we need church members to go to websites (sign up for camp, join a group, etc), we're probably better off designing and promoting a specific page rather than cluttering up the homepage.
 
— Michael Lukaszewski (@mlukaszewski)
 

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