Core Values 101
We just finished our mastermind programme here in the uk and every mastermind the first session comprises a recap of the “fundamentals” or “structure tools” we teach to run a solid 7 figure practice.
- Core values
- Meeting rhythms (weekly, quarterly , one on one etc)
- Organisational charts
- 2 page business plan
A quick lesson on core values 👍
- LESS is more!
In my experience, more than 6 or 7 is a total waste of time. Trust me this was a tough pill for me to swallow as I just couldn’t see how I was going to whittle my initial list of 12 down to just 6, but as time went on I realised that if everything is important then nothing is important. A key lesson here is, if your team can’t pretty much name them all off the top of their heads, then you’ve got too many.
- They are for the team, not the patients/customers!
One of the biggest misconceptions with core values is that they are a list of snazzy statements we hang on the wall that tell the patrons of a business what we stand for.
This is not the case although It is true that they may inadvertently end up being that, but core values were never designed for that, they were created to drive behaviours of a team. An internal facing tool. A set of rules that we operate within that dictate who joins our team, what we expect of ourselves, and how we keep ourselves accountable. They are there to protect us, FROM OURSELVES! We hire, fire and reward, according to them.
Start by asking two questions. Firstly, how do I know when this place is rocking, or how would you describe the great things that are happening when things are going well? For example, everyone has great energy which might become
“we have the same energy for the last patient of the day as we have for the first patient of the day”,
or everyone is respectful of each other which might become
“we enthusiastically praise and support every team member”
Secondly, what really pisses you off? For example; it might be that the face paper is left on the floor and team members just walk past it, which might eventually become a core value like
“we make sure the practice is spotless at all times’.
Or another example might be that it really pisses you off when team members are not arriving early for there shift and prepping or huddling before the shift which might become
“we always arrive 30 min before every shift to ensure we are prepared” etc
Good chance the answer to those 2 questions will be the makings of your core values. Also worth mentioning that they are as much there to keep us as “owners” in line as any other team member.
- Generic core values do jack shit!
Core values like “integrity” and “honesty” do absolutely nothing for a business. Mostly because of 2 key reasons. Firstly, one person’s definition of “integrity” or “honesty” is completely different to another person’s. Also those are often “permission to play” values. Meaning it goes without saying that having integrity is a “must”. And secondly you cannot confront a team member on breaching a core value like “integrity” without fundamentally harming the fabric of that relationship. You can however easily confront a team member on a breach of a core value that simply states “we arrive early to every shift” without challenging their “integrity” etc.
- Towards or away!
The point of core values is to drive behaviours. So make them do that by making them more specific. Things like “we always show up to team events, socials and training”. or “we are always early prepared and present” or “same energy for last patient of day, the first patient of day”. It’s very easy to say to a team member .. did you or did you not do core value 3 (show up to the event) yes or no. Or did you or did you not “show up early”. That drives behaviour.
Now to my kids…
Every morning my kids and I exchange three core values or declarations for the day. Without fail I say, or they say: What’s the most important thing, to which one of us replies;
- Be Kind!
- Do your best!
- Never give up!
They are 4 and 6 years old. Meaning, that’s just about all I could ever get them to “remember”. Your team and human beings in general, no matter the age, are no different. Less is more and repeated so often that people roll their eyes – THAT IS THE GOAL! Only then are you remotely getting to a point where it is infused within your business enough to actually affect the way you operate!
Oh, and my kids will normally add one more sentence at the end for good measure and it is …
Smash it Dad.. 🙂
I’m rooting for ya and wanting you to “smash it”
Love and light