All Business Values are the Same
In my experience coaching businesses for operational resilience I’ve found that all businesses are inherently the same. Just as they can internally organize themselves into three simple zones of selling, making and managing, they can also break down their operational values into four categories:
1. Happy staff – Employees who are generally satisfied enough to stick around and get the job done to (at least) a minimal specification.
2. Happy Stakeholders – Clients/Customers/Shareholders/etc that get what they expect from their relationship with the business.
3. Profit – Not just production or income, making money on top of what the job costs.
4. Generally likable – Be it regulators or media groups, if the business is not “generally likable”, the business can ultimately be made very uncomfortable and even fail if it’s not generally likable. It’s comes down to sustainability and, if brought to an intolerable level it’s a serious risk. I’d love to hear your suggestions on better names for this category. For example, when several senior managers fraudulently and unethically used the business for their own gain at the high cost of your employees and shareholders, your business is probably generally unlikable. When an employee is using your business opportunities to get access to young children they are also abusing, your business is probably generally unlikable. You get the picture.
Next in this series: Values in Balance