I said in an early blog that communications is the best way to bring your organisational values to life.
But why should you? What are the benefits? Because if there are no benefits then there’s no point doing it.
Here are four powerful benefits that come from communicating your organisational values:
1. It meets our fundamental needs
Communicating values at work meets our fundamental human need for significance, personal growth and making a contribution in life.
In her 2012 book, The Top Five Regrets of the Dying, Australian caregiver Bronnie Ware found that the number one regret dying people have is: “I wish I’d had the courage to live a life true to myself, not the life others expected of me.”
Communicating your organisational values attracts people who share those values and want to live a “true life” by working with you.
If you are solving people’s number one death-bed regret then that is going to be gold for your recruitment process and rocket fuel for your organisational morale and outcomes.
2. It improves how we behave
Communicating your values shapes good behaviours in the workplace.
When we know what is expected of us at work we’re much more likely to behave that way. Why? Because we are pack animals. We are tribal. We tend to follow the norms.
But only if we know what those norms are.
Communicating your values – your behavioural norms – changes what your employees think, say and do for the better (assuming you have good values!).
3. It constrains bad bosses
Constantly reinforcing values limits the power of leaders to reshape organisations to meet their own personal needs or work through their unresolved private neuroses.
Hands up who has worked for an organisation where a new top boss comes in and tears the culture apart (in a bad way)?
The result? Mass exodus of staff. And crashing morale for those who remain.
Having a strong values-based culture makes that sort of workplace vandalism much harder. Because it requires the new leader to first overturn the organisation’s values. And that’s a hard thing to do.
4. It builds trust internally
Communicating values builds trust among employees at every level.
And that encourages innovation, vulnerability and wellbeing in the workplace.
In a Harvard Business Review article, The Neuroscience of Trust, Paul Zak noted that “people at high-trust companies report 74% less stress, 106% more energy at work, 50% higher productivity, 13% fewer sick days… [and] 40% less burnout.”
These are very impressive figures.
And those kinds of results are available to you, simply by communicating (and living by) your organisational values.
Next week… 4 more great reasons to communicate your organisational values.