Values too often take place in an organisation as PLATITUDES rather than ingrained organisational ATTITUDES (Habits of thinking). A platitude is a flat, dull, or trite remark, especially one uttered as if it were fresh or profound
We all know by now that people buy WHY you do what you do, not HOW or WHAT you do. Your WHYis your purpose. It is the customer-centric reason your business exists. It's the problem you are passionate about solving in the world, your world, for your customers.
If your purpose is WHY people buy what you do, then your VALUES are why they buy it from you. "Purpose is WHY people buy. Values are why they buy it from you" - Dave Clare
Values should be what makes you unique in how you uniquely think about solving that problem you are passionate about in your world for people. If you've been struggling to find your UVP or USP (Unique Selling or Value Proposition), scrap that and just go with your UNIQUE VALUES PROPOSITION.
Your values are the unique thinking of your business. They tell us how to behave as an organisation because how we think determines how we act. They guide us and our teams on HOW WE THINK around here...not WHAT TO THINK.
How I think determines how I act.
They are lead, lived and loved from all around the organisation, starting with the leaders and throughout every member of the team (don't get me started on organisational hierarchy's!).
Unfortunately, many companies worldwide still have values like SERVICE, HONESTY, INTEGRITYand TRUST as their "core values". These are what I call "corporate rhetoric" or very pragmatic/practical values. These should be price of entry into business.
Let me say it one more time...you shouldn't be in business if you don't value service, honesty, integrity and trust. Therefore, this shouldn't be what makes you unique (although sadly it will for many), it's just price of entry into business.
In today's business world, wouldn't you agree that these should be price of entry into business, not what makes you unique?! It is my belief that if values like these (Service, Honesty, Integrity, Trust) are what make your business unique...we're all screwed. Seriously.