It’s January 2022 and we continue to be inundated with news and views postulating what the “post-covid” world of work will look like. Will there be a global “great resignation”? Will or can we continue to work from home? What would a permanent hybrid workforce look like? Will we travel state to state or even internationally to see clients or will Zoom remain the dominant form of communication? And so on.
All the questions we ask are forward-looking. But do organizations ask themselves the right questions about the real here and now?
I understand the need for a relentless, and somewhat godly, focus on what a “post” covid future will bring – in many ways it gives us a sense of hope that we will soon be past this disease and that we “will return to normal”. However, the reality is that we are entering our third year of living and working with covid not knowing when we will actually see the backend of the pandemic.
So what can organizations do now?
Right now, we need to have more conversations about how we can help our employees today – and a good place to start is to shine a light on our company values.
Company values versus employee value proposition
The values of a company are the beliefs, philosophies and principles that drive the company. They guide employee behavior and influence how the company interacts with its stakeholders. According to LucidityAfter reviewing hundreds of companies, the 10 most common company values are:
- Team work
- Client orientation
- The respect
- Celebrate Success
- The diversity
The employee value proposition (EVP) of a company is the value (benefits and rewards) that the company provides to employees in exchange for the value they bring to the company. According to research conducted by Gartner the elements that make up a compelling EVP include compensation, work-life balance, stability, location, and respect.
Make your EVP a business value
Without a doubt, a company’s values and its EVP are essential foundations for creating the right organizational culture – however, why on earth are they considered unique and somewhat mutually exclusive propositions? Why are your company’s values (and mission, etc.) front and center and a click away from your “About” page while your EVP is buried three or four clicks away somewhere under “Recruiting” or “Why work for us”? And why don’t your company values include a reference to your employees – outside of your expectation that they “work as a team”?
Yes, your customers are important. And yes, your employees need to work well together with passion and integrity and celebrate victories. etc But what about actually acknowledging that you value your staff?
Three years into the onset of covid when our employees are exhausted, overwhelmed with uncertainty, trying to work productively from home (often with children in tow) and are battered and bruised by the constant stream of data related to the covid – isn’t it time to elevate the importance of our employees to (at least) being among our top 10 drivers?
Right now, the question your organization needs to ask is not:
As an organization, What are our values ?
As an organization, what do we value the most?
When posed this way, surely the concept of fostering an engaged, healthy, productive and highly valued workforce should be your organization’s current goal?
I would like to see this concept added to your list of corporate values.
Written by Kate Christie.
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