If prompted, would your team be able to confidently describe the company’s workplace values? It’s not uncommon for corporate values to reside in a dark corner of a filing cabinet or on some forgotten about Microsoft Word document. However, what value does this hold for anyone? In this blog we describe the benefits of workplace values where they exist as an integral part of the workplace culture.
Now more than ever (especially with the rise of working Millennials) employees seek out jobs that fit with their own set of beliefs; and it’s a two way street. Employers with a strong workplace culture and values are going to be conscious of recruiting employees that fit with these ideals. According to Brent Gleeson, Forbes contributor: ‘hiring based on shared values and cultural beliefs leads to winning results’. He further points out that employee turnover is costly and therefore ensuring the right fit from the outset can help you to save money and retain your top talent. For more on talent management, check out our whitepaper on the topic here ‘How to develop a Talent Management Strategy’.
Strong workplace values provide clarity to all on what is considered important to the organisation, its overall goals and mission. This in turn can increase alignment with these goals, encourage a collaborative work environment and reduce the risk of conflict. In turn, this can increase employee productivity and engagement, a win-win for all involved! You can read more about aligning and cascading goals in our whitepaper on the topic here: ‘10 Tips for Cascading Objectives‘.
Strong workplace values can act as a benchmark for good behaviour, with managers and peers able to recognise colleagues for demonstrating these core values. A good performance management system should allow employees to show recognition to their colleagues against the company’s values. When it comes to performance ratings or promotional opportunities, the amount of recognition received by an employee is then visible within the system and can be used to aid decision making.
We have previously looked at the challenge of providing feedback in the workplace. In fact our CEO Lucinda has written an e-book on the topic which you can read here: Feedback – the gamechanger for performance management! One of the areas covered by the e-book is how to deliver feedback well. Lucinda explains that good quality feedback needs to be specific and factual rather than general and personal. This can be achieved by using the company’s core set of values. For example: ‘ I noticed that during that last presentation you quoted an incorrect figure to the client. This goes against our core value of honesty’. Furthermore, any deviations from these workplace values can be reported on in a way that can be perceived as less personal, so peers may feel more inclined to be honest when providing feedback, especially where the use of a 360 feedback tool is in place.
The answer is YES! But only when these values are an integral part of the organisations culture. When it is, the benefits can be huge: talent retention, increased productivity, employee recognition and engagement and better quality feedback. Where workplace values are not lived and breathed by those within the organisation, cultural change needs to take place; which includes increased visibility of the values that exist. This is not an easy task, but using Performance Management Software like Actus that facilitates the use of workplace values and encourages alignment with them can help.