Why values are important
Values are very important for executives in this country. In surveys, 90 percent of executives value values very high or rather high, and good 40 percent see in values a way of creating identity and meaning for them Companies.
The values influence the decisions, they regulate the interaction with each other, also with the customers and they are a kind of virtual role model for the behavior, especially for executives.
Values demand polarity
Values are a hot topic and a “code of conduct” has been developed for many companies and published on websites. This code of conduct is usually a collection of desired behaviors.
It is well known that there are normative management values that regulate everything that should happen and apply. In the normal case, the values control the behavior, but exceptions determine the rule. Values therefore need serenity in dealing, they demand a polarity.
Rules and exceptions
On the one hand, rigor is required in the observance of the values, violations have to be punished, otherwise values do not bring anything. On the other hand, there are clear outbacks, the exceptions under which values may or must be violated. Values can always only control the normal case.
In exceptional situations, there is a Plan B. Of course, there are also quite different opinions. The dogmatic approach to values, which are invariably and always rigorous, is also widespread.
The problem with the value-wish list
The reasons for this are diverse. We could call a pattern that can be observed again and again “wish lists of values”. In an organizational development project, people are invited to think about the values of the future, for example in conferences with large groups.
The result is lists of values with exactly those values whose negative opposite poles are currently being lived. So if there is little openness in the company, then "openness" will probably be on the list of values. This applies equally to "appreciation" or "innovation". These values represent the current deficit situation in the company and are therefore a mere wish list.
Values status quo
We can describe another pattern in value projects as the “value status quo”.
In this game, the values that currently shape the company are written down. Here you will find values such as “family-run”, “quality” or “tradition”.
Values of management
And briefly, a third pattern that we can call “Management Values”. In this game, management sets the values. The company's strategic deficits can then be found in these catalogs. We value “customer-oriented”, “flexible”, “team-oriented” or “enthusiastic” are the typical representatives.
With these games we will not start a good business development. The value lists remain what they are, just words on lists for which nobody takes responsibility. In companies, positive change processes are hardly initiated via value catalogs.
Managers are responsible
Leaders have a responsibility to make the small successes of change visible to all. It is also about rhythms in repetition because they make everything easier.
The energy pattern is the steady flow. We need constant energy input to keep the change going. Exercise daily demands their energy.
Values bring polarity
As soon as we work with values and use them in companies, we have to be aware of the polarity. Each value has a sisters value, which is especially true when we act at the level of the virtues.
If consistency (in the sense of impact) is made an important value in the company, then the positive equivalent value of flexibility is put on the siding. But consistency and flexibility form a polar pair of values. Consequence is not "valuable" without flexibility and vice versa. More consistency may be required for a certain period of time, but in the long run these values can only be understood as a pole pair.
Value pairs with a polar, contradictory effect
- Change and continuity
- Innovation and quality
- Consistency and flexibility
- Competitiveness and social responsibility
- Environmental orientation and profit orientation
- Shareholder orientation and stakeholder orientation
- Harmony and conflict
- Order and freedom
- Hierarchy and self-organization
- Management system and self-responsibility
- Individual development and team orientation
- Competition and cooperation
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German edition: ISBN 9783965963283
English version: ISBN 9783965963290 (Translation notice)
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