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Within People - A Guide to Bringing Values to Life


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How do you define your values to drive growth - and begin to live them in your culture? Full of case studies and practical tips, this guide was designed by Within People for leaders who use culture to drive their business forward, but are struggling to get values to work for them.

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Within People - A Guide to Bringing Values to Life

  1. 1. Within People A Guide to Bringing Values to Life
  2. 2. © 2019 Within People2 How do you define your values to drive growth and begin to live them in your culture? We help leaders all around the world grow the company they love. This guide was designed for leaders who use culture to drive their business forward, but are struggling to get values to work for them. By sharing a few principles of how we help our clients define, engage and lead with values, we hope to help your business grow too!
  3. 3. © 2019 Within People Values What we stand for Our guiding behaviours How we do what we do What they should be: A set of actionable statements The things we are held accountable for As a set, unique to us What they aren't: More than four Nouns, adjectives or words like "trust" and "honesty" Only about us - values must connect to customers too 3
  4. 4. © 2019 Within People Aren’t values just the fluffy, touchy feely words we put up on our walls? No! Values are strategic. They define the common behaviours that everyone in the culture are expected to show up to. They help us play like a world class team, make confident decisions, and measure the quality of our work. “Transforming a culture isn’t about professing a set of values and operating principles. It’s a matter of identifying the behaviours that you would like to see become consistent practices and then instilling the discipline of actually doing them.” - Patty McCord, Netflix 4
  5. 5. © 2019 Within People Bringing values to life Ten principles to guide you 5
  6. 6. © 2019 Within People Principle #1 Defining values Values are the power inside your business 6 Think of values as your super powers or your secret sauce. They are the set of behaviours that guide the business to your vision and deliver your purpose. To find your values, consider what your most important strengths are as a team. Then connect these to what you know your customers value most about you. Explore the connection between what both your team and your customers see as most important to creating impact.
  7. 7. © 2019 Within People7 Principle #2 Defining values They are actionable Values are not beliefs. They are a translation of what we believe into the way we do things. Values must be verbs in order to demonstrate “how” we do what we do. For example, “innovation” does not set an expectation of what we are meant to do. Make it actionable by going a bit deeper to express how you uniquely innovate. “Imagine it better” is one of's values, demonstrating to everyone that imagination is expected in the culture. Use statements that describe how you do what you do by starting with verbs that describe action.
  8. 8. © 2019 Within People8 Trust Integrity Care Passion Honesty Innovation Trust isn’t a value — it’s an outcome that results when your people see you living your values and keeping promises. People will “have integrity” when they show up to values that mean something to them. Simply “caring” is not a value —  it should be expected that we care a lot about what we do. How do you treat people to show you care? It’s almost impossible to ask someone to be passionate about something. Our passion lives in purpose. A business that isn’t honest is lying to itself and the people it serves. That business has no license to operate. Innovation is essential for all businesses to succeed in the long term. Your values should speak to how you innovate. Six words that are not values Qualities that should exist in every business
  9. 9. © 2019 Within People They are common to everyone in the company 9 Principle #3 Defining values Our values go beyond geography, location, and different sectors of the business. We don’t have different values for different teams or subcultures. One set guides us all - though as a team we can build our own meaning into our values to connect to how we use them to deliver our work. The UNESCO MAB programme has almost 700 sites around the world, led by people of vastly different cultural backgrounds. They are connected by their shared values, not by what sets them apart from each other. Unite your team around what’s common, not what’s different.
  10. 10. © 2019 Within People Principle #4 Defining values Values are about authenticity 10 When we show up as ourselves, we are authentic. That automatically differentiates us. Our values are with us for the long term. They help to define our identity. As we grow to meet the needs of those we serve, our positioning in the market might change but our DNA does not. Define values that are true - not different from your competitors.
  11. 11. © 2019 Within People Case Study: Amy’s Kitchen Amy’s is a family-run organic food business, founded 30 years ago in the California home of Andy and Rachel Berliner. Today the business employs thousands, with annual sales over $300m. In a time of change, the Berliners wanted to codify what’s made them special over the years - and to ensure this culture lives on across future generations. Getting values that were actionable was key to understanding the Amy’s magic. These values needed to work for teams in head office, as well as the hundreds of staff working to create their product. See Andy & Rachel talk about Amy's values in the video they made to share their story. 11
  12. 12. © 2019 Within People12 Principle #5 Engaging the team Values are memorable They can be counted on one hand. Four is the magic number. While great values-driven companies like Zappos might have ten, keeping it simple is your best bet! Avoid turning your set of values into an acronym - this actually makes them harder to engage with because people forget what they mean and just remember the shortcut instead. To live up to our values, everyone must be able to remember them.
  13. 13. © 2019 Within People13 Everyone can share examples of values in action Principle #6 Engaging the team Storytelling is the most powerful way of building meaning into your values. No matter where someone works in the business, they will be able to tell a story about how they see the values being lived every day. Leaders should use these stories to help people connect to what is expected in the culture. Stories give proof that the values are real and lived in the business.
  14. 14. © 2019 Within People Principle #7 Engaging the team We can commit to them and be held accountable 14 Values are behaviours - so it is clear when people are living up to them. Everyone in the business must commit to them, and so we need to keep them alive and front of mind. We also need to constantly reconnect to what they mean. Values can be measured, used alongside OKRs and help to guide personal development plans. It’s up to everyone in the business to demonstrate the behaviours of the culture. The more our values are referred to every day, the more we get out of them.
  15. 15. © 2019 Within People Case Study: British Land The British Land Company has existed for over 150 years, and has been through its fair share of transformation over that time. Recently the FTSE100 property company has embarked on a cultural evolution, driven by the definition of its purpose and the shifting role it must play in a changing society. Defining their values was critical to building belief in the next chapter of their success. The values are the foundation to guide a process of rapid change in a large, established company. “Now that we have our values right, they are known, lived and enduring” - Ann Henshaw, HR Director 15
  16. 16. © 2019 Within People They help us make decisions 16 Principle #8 Leading through values Values are strategic. They can shape our creative processes, help us choose the right investors, attract the best talent, and guide us to answer the difficult questions when times get tough. One&Only Resorts have transformed their values into a service philosophy that is helping them hire. It’s informed an innovative new recruitment process, and gives managers clear indicators of which candidates are the best fit for the culture. Put your values to the test by having the team practice using them to make decisions.
  17. 17. © 2019 Within People17 Values create impact Principle #9 Leading through values Values aren’t only behaviours for how we show up at work. They show how we deliver our work. They are us working at our best. They are aspirational and with the ambition to stretch us to achieve great things. Our values help us be the best we can be - to make a big impact on the lives of the people we serve. Make a clear connection to how your values create impact and help you to deliver on your purpose.
  18. 18. © 2019 Within People Principle #10 Leading through values Values and our culture drive growth 18 They grow our business, and they help us grow ourselves. Values keep us on track while we navigate the future. Get your values right and they will serve you for the long term. As the DNA of our culture, they give us a way to move confidently forward to our vision and grow the company we love. “It’s the humanity of a company that is going to create the long term value. Without humanity and without values, you end up with a company that perhaps makes money, but doesn’t stand for anything and really has nothing to be proud of. So, lead with your heart.” - Howard Shultz, Starbucks
  19. 19. © 2019 Within People The Values Principles Are your values your super powers? Are they actionable behaviours? Do they describe what is common in the culture? Can you count them on one hand? Are they truly authentic to you? Can people tell stories about them in action? Will they help you deliver on your purpose? Can they guide how you grow? Can you use them to make decisions? Can people be held accountable to them? Use this checklist to help you define your values - you should answer YES to every question! 19
  20. 20. Visit us to find out more: Within People is an international partnership that helps people find their purpose and grow