Aligning Goals & Values
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Establishing goals and defining values with our clients is one of the fundamental exercises we try to work through in trying to help create a road map for their future. Candidly, the” buy-in” from our clients in this process varies. Though almost every business agrees that setting goals is important and establishing a standard of core values makes sense, many often dismiss the importance of following through with the implementation.
Clarifying the two…
Goals are like items on a bucket list; once you do them you cross them off and go on to the next one. A realtor may sell $1M of real estate one month, but the next month they start back at $0. Goals help create focus on a particular project and give constant feedback on how well you are advancing towards an end point.
Values are what matter most to you. Things you are committed to. They are not one and done events. You don’t cross off values after a $1M month of sales. They are a constant. Think of them as a compass that keep you pointed in the direction you want your business to go. Values come from a much deeper place. Your business doesn’t “achieve a value” it exemplifies and demonstrates it in the way your company conducts business day in and day out.
When one accomplishes goals and does so using the values that are important to them (regardless if they have ever written them down or verbalized them) they feel good about it. If you accomplish goals but are not able to do so using your values, it will likely cause you stress and you will struggle to feel good, even though you achieved the goal.
Recently I heard about a sales person who left a company, not because of lack of sales but because the tactics the company was using did not align with the sales person’s personal value system. It didn’t matter how much this person sold, the values and the goals did not align.
Why this matters to you…
Many companies struggle with turnover and getting everyone on the same page. The factors that contribute to these two issues are more complicated than simply goals and core values. That said, there has to be a foundation under every building. We view the core values of your business as the foundation of any organization.
It is hard to build a strong team and expect them to focus on a goal if the members of the team all have different core values. It’s unlikely that you’ll have every employee of your company agree 100% with the core values of the company, but that doesn’t mean they don’t abide by those values. And, the more the values are referenced, whether it is a new employee orientation, during employee reviews, or just shared openly as part of the culture of the business, the more likely the employees will be setting goals, taking actions, and responding to things in ways that complement the values instead of disregarding them.
Setting and attaining SMART Goals is important. If you want to increase your success rate and improve the morale of your company, consider looking down at your foundation. If you (and your team) haven’t clearly verbalized what matters most to you in the way of a set of values, make some time to clarify them in writing and then share them with your company. Then set goals that allow you to incorporate and align with your values. We trust you will be happy with the results! As always we value any feedback in the space below.
Chris Steinlage Kansas Business Coach