Remember “bring your child to work day”? It’s designed as an opportunity for your son or daughter to experience you in your work environment, see what your career entails, and gain an understanding about different jobs that are available. Today I want to challenge you to bring your values to work. This is an opportunity for you to experience your job when your actions and decisions are completely aligned with your personal values, see what that entails for you, and allow you to gain an understanding about different ways of being at work. First, you need to be very clear on what your core values are. Make a list of the values that are important to you, then circle the 3 that are most important and which strongly influence who you are and the choices you make. Here is a short list of values to get you started:
- Family happiness
- What other values, beliefs or characteristics are important to you?
Once you’ve defined your personal top (or core) values, you can plan how you can embed these into everything you do, at home, at work, and in every part of your life. For each of your core values, ask yourself these questions (don’t forget to jot down the answers!):
- How do I clearly exhibit this value?
- When do I not act on this value (or when do I find it challenging)?
- What am I afraid will happen if I fully live this value?
- How does this value help me be a better employee / colleague / leader / friend / spouse / parent?
- What is one step I can take to embrace this value more fully at work?
- What would it look like to embody this value completely?
- How would it make me feel?
Hopefully this exercise has given you incentive to be aware of your values and how you express them at work, as well as in the rest of your life. Are you prepared to take the challenge and bring more of your values into your career and work life? When you do, you may find that you bring more of yourself into your work. You may find yourself happier, more peaceful, and less distracted by minor irritations. Others may react to you in new and surprising ways. Pay attention to the ripple effects of simply amplifying your own values, and look for the positive impact it has. Let’s make “Bring Your Values to Work Day” every day! Let me know how it goes for you.