Leadership wanting to bring the values of the organisation alive have to look in the mirror and be honest with themselves about how well they are truly living by them.
Leadership teams often spend time clarifying the team values and organisation purpose and then work to “implement” them. Meetings are held, feedback taken, posters hung around the workplace, websites and induction programs updated. A great deal of effort is expended.
Talking with the teams after a few months they are often frustrated because despite all the promotion and reinforcement of the values, behaviours have not changed. People still arrive late, are poorly groomed and are not foused on serving the guest.
At this point I ask the team to “look in the mirror”; do they arrive on time, are they well groomed and are they focused on serving the guest? If the answer is no, how can the people following them be expected to live by the values?
Sometimes we forget that we must bring the values to life by living them everyday at work and setting the example for others to follow.
Whilst communication, systems and procedures to support the values are important, the leadership team have to talk the talk and hold each other accountable to it, otherwise all the effort is wasted. People don’t need posters and training to tell them what the values of an organisation are; they get a pretty good idea from what they experience.
So, when you stand in front of the mirror with your team are you happy with what you see?