One of the critical things that drives the success of a business or organization is the set of core values of that organization or company. Core values are the foundational stone for success and provide the “North Star” for businesses managing change and disruptions in the marketplace. Without clearly defined core values, an organization bounces from situation to situation, without really understanding why it has chosen to do things a certain way.
Core values become the guiding principle and standard by which situations, customers, and even how internal matters are handled. Core values become “red lines” that are not negotiated or compromised. Everything can be traded and compromised, except core values. Easy to say, but much harder to do.
A person’s core values need to match with his/her business or organization’s core values. Without a close match, there is internal stress created, which results in a mismatch between an individual and the organization.
The McAllen Chamber of Commerce’s core values are Integrity, Respect, Customer Service, Teamwork, and Leadership. Each one of these words has been defined by the staff and given meaning. Here is what has been developed:
Integrity: To be an organization that does the right thing by taking responsibility, building trust, and acting genuinely and authentically with customers, the community, and stakeholders.
Respect: To be an organization that treats people with respect and follows through with commitments and promises. Recognizing our words and attitudes must have an impact with customers, the community, and stakeholders.
Customer Service: To be an organization that meets or exceeds our clients’ expectations for events, meetings, programs, and to impact outcomes through problem-solving, creativity, and innovation. Making sure our customers are successful.
Teamwork: To be an organization that fosters collaboration, shared direction, transparency, and a focus on shared information, with no hidden agendas. Experiencing success is a crucial driver for individuals and the organization.
Leadership: To be an organization that leads by modeling the way and building positive relationships and strategic partnerships. To be known as a high-performing, innovative, and creative organization. To be recognized as a positive influence in the community and marketplace.
The core values for the McAllen Chamber of Commerce are a “high calling.” Sometimes we fail miserably and fall short. People have called us out for not measuring up to or achieving our core values, but we continue to strive to meet the challenge.
It is not a comfortable journey.
Our core values are a tool used internally to evaluate performances and measure how to deal with tough situations or challenges. Understanding and agreeing to the core values makes the hard conversations a little easier because the standard has been set before an event or situation happens.
Nowhere in the Chamber’s core values do they talk about making money or profit. The by-product of these five core values will be financial success and/or profitability. If we execute the five core values right, financial success will follow.