If any of you read my recent comments and posts regarding the Edelman fiasco, you discovered my hot button....
I am intolerant of errors that should have been prevented and could have been prevented if every business decision is filtered through values that speak to honesty and transparency.
I believe that the foundation of success is made up of values, ethics and a great passion to grow our business in ways that make the world a better place. If money is our first priority, I don't think we will succeed, unless our only measure of success comes in the form of government-issued paper.
By developing strong bonds through relationship-building based on values and trust, our business will benefit financially and we begin the long, hard process of converting customers into loyal customers, which results in long-term positive impact and payback for our business.
To create values, we begin by asking a few questions:
1. Do people believe what we say and do we say what we mean?
2. Is our business built on values that represent the heart and soul of the founders and leaders of the business?
3. Does the corporate culture buy into those values?
4. And do the values represent core beliefs held by the executives and founders that reach beyond profit?
5. Why should we expect anyone to buy our products or services if they cannot trust us to be honest and caring human beings?
When we read headlines and articles that indicate a business acted in a dishonest or untrustworthy way, all our businesses suffer. In my opinion, if you haven't declared your business values, don't wait another minute to do so.
The first step is to identify the values on which the company will run. These values will never change and they must represent the true and authentic values of every owner and founder of the business. Everything that follows will align with these values. The values should be printed on every plan–including revised business plans, organizational strategic plans and departmental strategic plans. And those values should be used to evaluate everything the business says and does, before we say and do anything.
When we build our business on values and insist that everything we do is filtered through those values, we then build trust, credibility, and customer loyalty through our behavior.
In conclusion, I believe that success and business growth revolve around these 10 critical factors, with values the most important:
1. Credibility, Trust and Values
2. Relationships and Partnerships
3. Brand Development and Brand Management
4. Business Culture and Diversity
5. Under Promising and Over Delivering
8. Visionary Thinking, Calculated Risk Taking, Strategic Thinking and Doing What You Do Best
9. Sales and Marketing
10. Listening, Solving and Meeting Real Needs
These things, I believe, will create a business that we can be proud of.
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