The Values Vacuum

A technology company CEO acquaintance recently told me he didn’t consider it that important to articulate core values for his start up team. It struck me speechless as I could not imagine how articulating values don’t matter. Nor did I have a ready made rationale for why it should. Shame on me. Today it hit me. Nature hates a vacuum. In the absence of an authentically stated and published set of core values, the organization–being a culture of people–will publish its own un-written values. They may or may not be what leadership had in mind. My experience in business tells me that people in general want and deserve better. Most people want to be–and appreciate being–held to a higher standard. In the absence of a code of beliefs to define the organization, the organization defines itself along the path of least resistance, losing soul and purpose along the way.

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