Corporate values: they’re not only important, but critical to the overall success of your business.
I like how the author of this fantastic article explains it: “the more united a company is in celebrating and enforcing those values, the more value they add, collectively, to the company.”
At Juice, two of our values are to “be real” (authentic) and to “create simplicity and ease in the system”—whether that system be business processes, employee workload or otherwise.
Several months ago, a former colleague of mine presented a fantastic business opportunity: the chance for Juice to expand operations beyond Canada and into the United States.
As you can see from this blog post, the expansion happened.
But it almost didn’t happen.
Let me explain why.
Not the reaction we’d hoped for!
Juice is all about energy.
What does this mean? We not only want our customers to have energy left at day-end for their families, friends and community. We want the same for our own employees.
We expected Juice staff to be thrilled at the prospect of the expansion! But they weren’t.
Instead, they voiced concerns that our team already had too much on our plates—and such a business move might deplete our group’s energy for the worse.
Our management team was a bit taken aback—not to mention disappointed. For the expansion to be successful, we needed every single employee on board.
So we set out on a mission to live our corporate values, to ensure every individual felt heard and could contribute to the final decision.
Being real and authentic
Authenticity is about having direct—and oftentimes difficult—conversations. It’s not always easy. But employees appreciate it. And when leaders address issues in a real, authentic way, it can actually give employees a sense of optimism for the future.
With that in mind, we invited our US-based colleague (hello, Mike Torrie!) to our Guelph office to meet staff and learn their individual concerns. He then created a report with recommendations of things Juice needed to do before making the commitment to move into the US.
Following that, our management team again met with Juice staff to discuss their concerns in greater detail.
It wasn’t an easy discussion to have. But we were determined to find out what mattered most to employees, and what they needed to make this business expansion happen.
In general, employees felt it was a good business decision—but where was the extra energy going to come from? Were there any reserves? How would it affect each individual employee? They wanted more details.
They also wanted to ensure a specific colleague wouldn’t be negatively impacted.
Creating ease and simplicity
In particular, employees worried that, with more responsibility on the plate of one of our team members, that employee would be stretched too far.
In response, management sat down with this employee to find out how to make things easier for them. We learned that the employee:
In response, we decided to change the employee’s role to fit their passions better—and did so in a way that maintained ease in the overall system without negatively impacting others.
Simple as that.
Almost immediately, we saw positive changes.
The employee began feeling energized again, and the rest of the staff—with their concerns now addressed—began to get excited about growing the business.
And—well, you know what happened next.
If it weren’t for living our values and ensuring the expansion would boost energy within the organization, Juice would not have moved forward.
But by being real and creating simplicity among our team, we shifted things so our employees could look toward the future with optimism.
And optimism is what you need to fuel energy, improve engagement, and get outstanding results.
Moral of the story
The moral of the story is this: corporate values are, for lack of a better word, valuable. Valuable to leadership, to employees, and to profits.
By living one’s values, people can connect in much more meaningful ways, and come together to produce brilliance.
How are you doing living out your corporate values?
Co-Founder of Juice Inc, Thought Leader & Author
Co-Founder of Juice Inc.
General Manager and Director of Sales
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