Some days are etched in your mind forever. For me, one of these days occurred after returning from a particularly arduous business trip. I entered our offices, exhausted, and needing to refocus my attention when my assistant pulled me aside to say that a couple of people from the Chamber of Commerce were waiting to see me.
I had been nominated for the Small Business Person of the Year award, my assistant explained, and they wanted to interview me as part of their evaluation.
Worn out from my trip, but simultaneously thrilled, I hurried to my office and put on my best face.
Insight: Sometimes simple phrases have a way of distilling our thoughts and beliefs down to their very essence.
The most memorable question they asked — the one to which I answered in a phrase that has continued to replay itself in my mind over the past thirty years: — was, “What are the three reasons for your company’s success?”
Searching for a way to succinctly explain why we’d been so successful, I replied, “People, People, People!”
People, People, People
That simple, three-word response was a powerful statement about our company, our culture and my leadership. Their simple question led me to distill my leadership philosophy down to its essence.
Every leader can achieve the best results by employing this most important strategy:
Discover Your Core Values
As the leader, I learned that it was important for me to identify and champion our company core values.
I started to realize that my search for our beliefs, or core values, was a key part of achieving significant and sustainable growth.
The impact of discovering and communicating your core values is so significant, I must issue the following warning!
WARNING: Organizations that identify and rally around their core values will experience extraordinary (knock your socks off) results!
I learned that every company has core values, even if they haven’t been discovered yet.
Once I discovered my core values and shared them with our employees, our people began to understand the Nside/Outside principle in how (and why) our internal suppliers and internal customers were to behave between each other.
We also found that our internal behaviors were the same as the behaviors between us and our external customers and external suppliers.
And when you think about it, shouldn’t it be that way? …that we behave the same regardless of where we are, or what we are doing, or who we are talking to. Jesus, in his teachings to his disciples, shared wisdom that we can apply here.
“My command is this: Love each other as I have loved you.” John 15:12 NIV
I believe Jesus is asking us to echo the nature of his love and to do so we must start with the status of our hearts.
That is why success is an inside job!
The following statement propelled me into a deeper discovery of my core values:
I want to be a Values-Driven Company that achieves results; not a Results-Driven Company that has values. – Bobby Albert
I’ve made a simple Values Discovery Worksheet for you to use in your own core values journey. It’s FREE, and you can download it immediately by <clicking here>. Feel free to print it or save it for your own use.
If you would like to go to a summary blog post about core values, you can click here.
Do you know your core values? If not, are you ready to discover your core values? Please share your comments <here> and share this blog post with a friend or co-worker.