Are company values important?

In a world that has changed so much in 9 months are our company values still valid and are they important? Or are our company values like the human appendix – we all have one but we’re not exactly sure what it is for?

Kobus Neethling, president of South African Creativity Foundation, says that for most companies’ values have become empty words on a company profile, collecting dust in a bottom drawer. While many companies have a set of values, their employees often do not know what they are, or what to do with them. With all the environmental challenges and with staff still working remotely the need to feel connected and valued will be more important in the new year. Companies need to anchor themselves in a totally new way, with values that are meaningful and lived every day. Is it time to redesign values that breathe new life into our organizations?

In order to have your values work for you, design them so that they speak to all your employees. A good way to reach all your employees is to use whole-brain communication style include all the different kinds of thinking types in the company. The Neethling Institute identified eight different thinking types or dimensions based on what he calls the eight-dimension whole-brain instrument. The instrument measures and describe thinking preferences in people. The different thinking types have a set of behaviours that makes up the behaviour of the company.

To create values that make an impact, you need to connect it to the companies’ set of behaviours. Only then will you achieve results. “For example, you can’t say passion is your company value and leave it at that.”. “You have to identify a set of behaviours attached to passion. That way you ensure that passion is alive and understood by everyone in the company.” Passion is the excitement of creating new ideas, for some, it is working in groups, and for others it is problem-solving. Make sure your values speak to all eight thinking types.

Values are about creating an environment where everyone is happy and positive and if you leave out any of the eight dimensions, there will always be people in the organisation who feel as if they don’t belong.” There are many benefits in creating values that speak to all your employees:

1 When you anchor your values in behaviour, you become a value-driven company where values are alive and have meaning.

2 Once leaders are eight-dimensional, they create an environment where productivity is increased. “People are happier, more motivated, and more productive when they have a sense of belonging. The moment employees feel they belong, they are more committed and energetic.”

3 Eight-dimensional values enhance the creative spirit of an organisation a hundredfold. “Your brain is able to come up with millions of new ideas since the culture of the company is open to diverse opinions.”

4 Relationships between people are far more positive. “With this approach, there is greater acceptance of different opinions and people tend to understand each other a lot better. People flourish in an environment where they feel their uniqueness is valued.” Keeping this eight-dimensional model in mind goes a long way in evaluating your employees’ performance and it is a great tool to create measurements to that fits the thinking preference instead of judging everyone with the same measuring stick.

5 This model is also extremely useful when creating teams, managing people and recruiting.

Agnesia is a certified whole-brain practitioner and for more information on how the whole brain model works email Agnesia Agrella at

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