Strategy execution values – The real decision maker
Values are pillars of any organisation especially for decision making. As Roy Disney has rightly put in – “It’s not hard to make decisions once you know what your values are”. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nR0CBq4WEXY
Values for strategy execution are guiding principles that encourage individuals to make appropriate decisions based on the company’s stated beliefs and its attitudes toward business practices.
While most companies state their set of values on their websites, when you interact with the employees they seem to take decision based on their instincts and not on what the company stands for. Their personal values become company values! So for similar interactions and situations, different customers experience different outcomes. Like families, organisations are also built on strong values for obvious reasons. If not inculcated, employees in organisations tend to get manipulative and inconsistent.
This was apparent in one of our recent interaction with an organisation that had “Ethical behaviour” as their core value. A highly productive senior employee, after a thorough investigation, was found guilty of sexual harassment and was asked to resign. The perpetrator’s immediate manager was of the opinion that the decision was harsh and that he be given another chance as he is a very productive employee. Is he diluting the value in the fear of losing a team member? Either the value is not understood and its applicability not clearly defined to the manager or he is simply making a decision for his own benefit. However, this is a case of inconsistency and there can negative repercussions to the business and customers in the long run. Imagine the effects of decisions made by the manager on “Ethical behaviour” on other aspects of his workflow. It’s about making ethical choices while taking a business decision.
When we requested employees of one of our customers to write down the key Values that really made the company what it is today, they did come up with a couple of Values. One of the Values was “Ownership” and when asked what it meant to them, they articulated the meaning quite well. However, when asked as to how it impacted the organisation and their customers, they were unsure. When the impact of the Value “Ownership” on the business and customers is not understood, how do they make the right decisions?
Recently we were assigned to come up with and imbibe Values for an organisation. After many hours of brainstorming with the stakeholders, four core values were finalized. Arriving at and defining what it meant to the organisation and customers was the easier part, bringing it to life was challenging! We conducted interactive sessions to bring in relevance of the Values to their jobs, organisation and customers. To concretise and make it a part of their workflow, we introduced adherence to values as a part of their review system. This way we were able to institutionalise, sustain and continuously align to the Values. The paved way for easy buy-ins and provided critical inputs for decision making!
It is important for employees across the organisation to understand Values and its impact on the overall success of their organisation and its customers.