Employees have to be clear about their leader’s values, their own values, and the shared values. That way, they will know the company’s expectations of them. They will also better handle the conflicting demands of work and personal lives.
Organizations that will succeed usually look for the middle ground between leadership and organizational credibility. At the very end, the promise of a leader is as good as that of its leaders. It really doesn’t matter how many people make the company – it could be 2 or 20,000 people. There has to be an agreement about the promises members of the organization can keep. If this is not done, leaders, the employees, and organization as a whole risk losing credibility.
DNA of corporate culture
It is important that a business builds a culture that models and promotes the same value system from managers to employees. Organizations that have shared values tend to experience a difference in work performance and attitudes. Leaders of such organizations have clearly defined organizational values, the leadership vision, and expected employee behavior. It is the DNA of the corporate culture. Successful communication starts with clearly defined corporate goals and values. In a way, the definition and adoption of company mission and is a two channel process. The company should know what to expect from the employee just as the employee should know what the company stands for. There has to be an agreement between employees and the company ahead of time, for there to be any shared values.
Having shared values is like a hospital that has a clear vision for care and a mission to attract premium doctors. The hospital hopes to bring in patients to enjoy the best technology offered by top doctors. The company’s values can be read on billboards and throughout the hospital: At Dignity Health, we believe humanity holds the power to heal. Let’s heal each other with Humankindess* and respect. Hello Humankindness. Their intent is that every employee, caregiver or not, should treat clients with sincere kindness. Clients in this case include patients, their family members, each other and even flower delivery services. The hospital’s shared value is respect for humans’ –mind, body, and soul. The leaders in the hospital are expected to live and breathe it. Constituents, on the other hand, should see and feel it. In every situation they must first ask how they will create kindness. A doctor cannot, therefore, be kind to patients and not their families without sending a mixed message. If they neglect any of the clients, questions arise if they really share in the common values.
State of balance
When a company has a system that promotes shared values across the board, it’s bound to enjoy many benefits. Having shared values is like an antibiotic that creates a well-rounded healthier company the doctor ordered. First, it creates an environment in which teamwork thrives. Second, employees tend to better understand what’s expected of them by the company. The organization achieves this by training new employees on its value system. The alignment of employee and company value systems creates a state of balance that’s beneficial for the company. Employees tend to behave more ethically when they share values with the company. Shared values also ensure that employees have high loyalty levels, pride in the company, and strong feelings of personal effectiveness. Such employees tend to be more hardworking and caring.