Building a Team That Is True to Your Values and Purpose – Why and How?
People in an organization behave in a way their immediate managers behave. This isn’t a taught behavior, though it is learned. Employees learn how to act and react from their immediate manager. The example that a leader sets is the example that employees will follow.
The examples set by supervisors, managers, and leaders set the psychology of what is regarded as acceptable behavior. Not simply in the process of doing things, but how things are done. Actions deliver unspoken instructions about workplace culture. Therefore, the role of any person in authority – whether that is a leader, manager, supervisor, or other person delivering training – is critical in setting the tone for behavior in your organization.
It is essential that you build a team that aligns with your values and purpose – for it is these traits that should direct your organization’s culture, which, in turn, directs how your people act. Your employees are a reflection of you.
The importance of aligning employees with your values and purpose
The best teams are motivated by a company’s values and purpose. If every member of a team is aligned with the same value and purpose, the team will work together more effectively.
When employees are not aligned with organizational values and purpose, they lose the ability to focus on what is important for the business. Instead, they start focusing on work that doesn’t matter or become confused by the work they are doing.
You should consider using strategic assessment tools to find teams and employees who are not aligned with your values and purpose. You will then have a greater understanding of the misalignment and what strategies to employ to adjust.
5 Strategies to align your employees with your values and purpose
However, how do you make sure your company culture is intentional and not just a projection of what you think your company should be? It’s not enough to believe in the values and purpose of your company. It must be influenced by it as well.
Here are five strategies you should employ to ensure your employees are aligned with your values and purpose.
Define the company values and purpose so all team members are aligned with your direction
Your organization’s values and purpose are what it stands for. They are what keeps it from losing sight of its goals, and what keeps your employees motivated to work toward their goals.
The company values can be stated in one to four sentences, which will consist of the following:
Remember, your company values and purpose are the foundation that will drive your company forward. Without a clear understanding of your company values, team members may not be able to articulate what their purpose is.
Establish clear leadership roles and team structure with clear definitions of expectations of each role
Leadership is a complex topic and one that has evolved over time. In the past, leadership structures were more hierarchical, with followers and leaders following a leader’s instructions. Today, leadership roles are more fluid. They can be delegated downwards to follow up on tasks while the leader focuses on big-picture ideas.
The current trend of delegating responsibilities brings about new challenges for leadership – trying to keep the team together without a clear hierarchy is difficult.
Provide opportunities for regular communication throughout the company
Communication is one of the most important aspects of any business. It’s not just about the words that we say because we want to convey our message. It’s also about how employees feel, and how they’re treated.
Organizations should provide opportunities for regular communication throughout the company to make sure that everyone is on the same page. This type of communication helps in solving any issues in a timely manner and allows people to work together.
Regularly providing new ideas through brainstorming sessions, or giving employees opportunities for feedback, will help them feel more engaged, as well as provide opportunities to reconfirm values and purpose and provide guidance on acceptable behavior.
Make sure employees know their contributions make a difference
Managers should give employees a sense of how their work impacts the company. Recognition programs can be a great way to show appreciation for hard work and progress, as you:
Recognize employees for engaging with their peers, discussions, and ideas
Reward employees who provide specific feedback on how to improve work processes
Cement acceptable behaviors into individual and team thinking
Allow employees to carry out their work knowing that they are appreciated
Additionally, recognition improves employee satisfaction and engagement. This will, in turn, lead to increased productivity and decreased turnover rates.
Set the right culture to make sure employees are excited about coming to work every day
Organizations imprint their culture on employees by making sure that the employees feel like they have a purpose, that their work is meaningful, and that the company’s values align with theirs. One way that some organizations are doing this is by having values-based events, such as retreats or organization/team meetings where employees can discuss what they enjoy about working for the company.
Ensure your leaders reflect your values and purpose
Your workplace should reflect your values and traits. What you show is what you get, so it’s important to make sure your leaders reflect your values and purpose.
When your employees understand why your organization exists, the benefits will flow. It is important to convey your values and purpose consistently and constantly, and it is essential that your leaders, managers, and supervisors exhibit these values and beliefs in their own behaviors. This way your employees learn how to behave, and will become more creative on their own with trust in the organization’s vision.
To learn more about developing the leadership skills that will propel your employees and teams to new heights, join our Leadership Circle.