• Values: Vital for a Driven Business

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    When we talk about being driven in a business sense, we think of moving forward with intense desire, toward a destination, and acquiring valuable things along the way…things like experience, connections, notoriety, revenue and more.

    When you know Why you’re in business, then you can move onto creating the How—which is predominantly determined by your core “drivers” (i.e. Values). When the values of your business are clearly defined and so deeply embedded within your professional operations that every interaction demonstrates those values, then the question of How? is more easily answered, because all things will be executed in alignment with those corporate values.

    Consistency is HUGE when it comes to the success of any business, and when values take a central role in decision making (for all parties involved), then there will be common threads that run through all operations. Your ideal customers will take note of this, and will come to trust your business as the go-to in the industry because they know what to expect and can respect your way of doing business because they share the values your brand demonstrates. Those same clients will then spread the word to others who share those values, working to bring more ideal customers on-board to grow your business and drive it forward. When values are at the core of every manoeuvre and professional relationship, the snowball effect is practically undeniable.

    When Values are Core to your Standards of Doing Business, then you have a Values-Based Organisation in which…

    Loyalty begets Loyalty.

    Growth begets Growth.

    A values-based organisation sounds great, right? Everyone should have one, right? Well, there are reasons that some companies that say they are values-based simply aren’t able to make it work. Here are a few of those reasons:

    • A Lack of Honesty: If you’re operating under the guise of values you’ve chosen just because you think that’s what your audience wants to hear, or because those values seems to be ‘trendy’ at the moment, you will be found out. Trust will disintegrate, as will your brand. Instead of putting values down on paper that you pull from exterior sources, pull values from your heart. Choose values that you hold dear, and that you naturally demonstrate every day without prompt. These are the values that will motivate you to drive They are also the values that will foster authentic professional relationships that will be enjoyable as well as profitable.
    • Hiring without Attention to Values: If you want your entire team to drive forward with a common goal and with true allegiance to your business’s purpose, they must share your corporate values. Without this, how can they genuinely support and build your brand? How can they stand behind your brand, make decisions that will grow your brand, seek out opportunities that will benefit your brand…champion your brand? Skipping this step is like marrying someone with the intention of ‘changing them.’ It rarely works, and the business is usually the biggest casualty.
    • A Lack of Focus: Let’s face it: there’s a lot of noise out there. The competition is doing this, the market is doing that, the industry is moving in this direction, the community is moving in that All of these external influences, and many more, can detract focus from How you have committed to accomplish your Why They can cause you to lose sight of your values, and to make decisions that harm the consistency and trustworthiness of your company. Stay focussed by making your values visible to all involved, so that they are top-of-mind at all times. Meet regularly to discuss the team’s adhesion to values. Monitor, measure and refocus when necessary.
    • An Emphasis only on the External: There’s a tendency amongst businesses to hyper-focus on what the public sees, with little attention paid to values that are demonstrated internally. In truth, the unwillingness of any team member to adhere to corporate values will eventually manifest externally. Alignment is crucial, inside and out.

    Your business growth strategy cannot exist [for very long] without a How, and that How is facilitated by an honest, working list of values. Your corporate values may be integrity, excitement, fun, adventure and friendship. Or they might be accuracy, reliability, helpfulness, teamwork and knowledge. No two lists are alike, and yours will be no exception.

    Have you clearly defined your corporate values? Do those values align with your vision? Do your team members, affiliates and clients share those values? For help with these questions and more, contact me via email or phone to have a free 30-minute consultation. This is a brilliant way to become clearer on the core values that will drive you and your team toward delivering a highly effective business growth strategy.

     

     

     

     

  • This is your Mission – should you choose to accept it!

    This is your Mission – should you choose to accept it!

    I talked in an earlier blog about the benefits of having a business plan and how having a business plan is necessary to know where you are going in business and to help you to steer the course to success.

    Whilst most business owners know the value of having a business plan (even if the vast majority don’t actually have a business plan), many do not understand the value of having a clear Mission statement – or in fact many aren’t really clear what a Mission statement is.

    A Mission Statement is a short statement – usually a short sentence or two that clearly defines your company purpose and primary objectives. Having a Mission statement can be the driving force and focus behind the business. It can be the beacon for you and your employees as a reminder of what you are doing and why you are doing it.

    How to create a Business Mission Statement
    Creating a Mission statement that clearly expresses your business purpose and primary objectives can take time. However going through the process can often help business owners to get clarity about what it is that their business is about and help them to reconnect with their passion and motivation in being in their business.

    The challenge for you as a business owner is to create a Mission statement that accurately reflects your passion and values and declares how you are going to make a difference in the world.

    Process for Creating an Inspiring Mission Statement

    1) Plan enough time to create your Mission statement – a few hours to a full day.
    2) Set a date in your diary for creating your plan – make sure it is going to happen.
    3) Involve others connected with the business – this can give you valuable insight as to what you provide for others and help to generate lots of creative ideas.
    4) Be prepared – get the things ready that you will need for brain storming e.g. a suitable space, white board, flip chart, coloured pens, paper etc
    5) Prepare a list of questions to ask yourself and others involved with the business.
    6) Have fun exploring what your business/team is about.
    7) Use inspiring and exciting words to grab reader’s attention and create a dynamic visual image or your business.
    8) Make sure your Mission statement is short and clearly stated so anyone – so even a 5 year old can understand it!
    9) Be proud of your Mission Statement – own it and share it. Publish/post it for your employees, customers and stakeholders to see.

    Some questions to ask to help create your Mission Statement:
    What is it that we do?
    • Who do we do this for?
    • What do we offer our clients?
    • How do we serve our clients?
    • Why are we in this industry?
    • Why did we start this business?
    • What is important to us (our values)?
    • What are we passionate about?
    • What image of our business do we want to convey?
    • What is it that we offer that is special, unique or different?
    • What impact do we want to make in the world?
    • What are we committed to delivering?

    Examples of Mission statements to inspire you:
    Nike: To bring inspiration and innovation to every athlete in the world.

    Starbucks: To inspire and nurture the human spirit – one person, one cup and one neighbourhood at a time.

    Coca-Cola corporation: To refresh the world…To inspire moments of optimism and happiness…To create value and make a difference.

    Amazon: To be the most customer-centric company in the world, where people can find and discover anything they want to buy online.

    Dow Chemical: To constantly improve what is essential to human progress by mastering science and technology.

    Intel: Delight our customers, employees, and shareholders by relentlessly delivering the platform and technology advancements that become essential to the way we work and live.

    Ebay: Provide a global trading platform where practically anyone can trade practically anything.

    Now you have your business Mission Statement let this be a guiding focus for your strategic actions and plans. Having a Mission Statement that accurately reflects your business will help you to attract and gain the right clients and engage your staff.

    Having a powerful message in a Mission Statement is important for your business. If you would like help from me to create your Mission Statement or business plan please click here to contact me for a free strategic consultation.