How to Bring Organisational Values to Life

Tips to Embed Required Value-Driven Behaviours In our previous article, ‘Creating a purpose-driven organisation: the importance of values in the development of people processes’, we discussed […]

Tips to Embed Required Value-Driven Behaviours

In our previous article, ‘Creating a purpose-driven organisation: the importance of values in the development of people processes’, we discussed the crucial nature of values to engage people in an organisation’s purpose and vision.

Values are great. So is trust. We need both. But what does it look like? What are some tangible behaviours that we can associate with values – and how can we implement them?

The starting point: Value vs behaviours

Before delving into what an organisation and its leaders can do to embed desired behaviours within the culture and working practices of their people, we should first ensure that leaders are aware of the nature of values and behaviours.

Values are abstract concepts that trigger how we feel and act. And values can be pretty fluid, as far as they can mean different things for different people in different contexts. For example, two people may have equally high family values and wish to provide the best for their loved ones. However, one of these people believes this translates as working 70-hour weeks to earn the money to pay for a great standard of living, while the other person believes that it is necessary to spend as much time with family as possible.

It is important to understand how the same values can manifest in different behaviours. For an organisation, behaviours can be defined as ‘actionable and measurable’ operating principles – and it’s also important to ensure that an organisation’s values deliver consistent behaviours.

How to implement values in a company ─ 8 tips to turn organisational values into tangible behaviours

A company’s values can be the difference between success and failure. They are what makes the company different from other companies and stand out in the marketplace. Therefore, it is important to understand how to implement them in your organisation.

Here are eight tips to help you drive tangible behaviours from your values.

Provide real examples and talk through the company’s expectations

Values are not just a set of words on a poster, they are demonstrated through actions and enforced by leadership. This helps to provide examples of what employees should do to align with the organisation’s values in any given situation.

Turn values into pioneering stories that inspire

Another way in which values can be implemented in an organisation is by using stories that inspire. Stories of how values were implemented in the past and how values were applied to solve problems for customers. But there is more than just telling stories about what has been done before ─ it’s about infusing values into everything from business strategy, marketing campaigns, and customer service interactions.

Focus on changing the behavior of groups, not individuals

People tend to act differently in groups than they do alone. Groups produce conformity, and self-police behaviours of their members ─ and individuals decide how to behave and act based upon the behaviours and actions of those around them.

Make performance management and recruitment a key part of your strategy

Organisations have found success by incorporating their values into their day-to-day work; for example, by promoting employees who embody the values in their work, or by hiring based on value alignment.

Identify your potential first followers and key influencers

Internal influencers are key to helping communicate and drive employee engagement in your values and required behaviours. Influencers have a strong voice and internal network ─ listen to them, tap into their knowledge, and use them to drive the change you require.

Make it a leadership and management responsibility

Too often, the implementation of values and behaviours is an edict passed down from the C-suite to HR. While HR will be involved in this work, it is not an HR program. It should be a continuous and consistent strategy for which leadership and management are personally responsible.

Embed your values into organisational processes

Values must be fully integrated into how you do things. This includes during the entire employment lifecycle ─ recruitment, onboarding, performance reviews, etc. ─ as well as daily operating processes and interactions with key stakeholders (such as service users and providers), and customers.

Turn behaviours into rituals

Recognise and reward those employees who embody your organisation’s values in what they do and how they do it. Reward people in real-time, being specific in describing why recognition is being made. People follow culture heroes ─ hold events in which you create these through your recognition programs.

Leverage your values in your business

Fast-forward five years. What will have happened for you to look back and see your current challenges as the greatest gift for your business? How will you embed your values into your organisation, and develop the behaviours that set you apart from your competition?

PrimeFocus™ is a simple yet powerful framework that helps individuals and leaders focus on success and deliver prime performance. Our free assessment provides you with a snapshot of the eight conditions that must be in place and aligned to deliver prime performance. It will provide an insight as to where you are on the journey and whether you should consider talking to us about the value that comes from using our full PrimeFocus™ Organisational Assessment.

To find out more about how we work with you to measure and embed the values you need to achieve your goals, read more here.

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