On Thursday last the room rocked at our Reboundog Sofa Meet-up
What I took away is how much there is a need for Values led Leadership
Leadership in both for profit & non profit social entrepreneurship (NB: this term is used going forward to imply SE, Social Innovator & Social Impactor) leaves a lot to be desired.
1) because despite the entity purporting to do social good etc., it is often using archaic & more often than not heirarchical leadership models.
2) it is not involving, nor engaging with the whole team from senior management to in the case of non-profits their volunteers.
This sector is missing a trick, a HUGE trick, in Values Led Leadership becoming accepted as a great way to do business. The way forward to do business.
Social good isn't something you tack on as an afterthought to look good & hopefully attract more customers.
What if instead, we did business based on our Values.
Not those meaningless values commonly see in foyers & on coffee mugs. You know the ones I'm on about "we have integrity" - that's a given, "we are a sustainable business" - duh, how the F. is that defined & do your staff, customers & suppliers know what it means?
Real Values that are unique to each individual social entrepreneurship?
Real Values that have been identified by the team, tested with employees, volunteers, customers & suppliers. So everyone does business with you because they love the Values you're built on & Oh, they F...ing understand what they mean!
After the Sofa Meet-up I was interviewed by Reboundog member Debbie Dahmer on her Animals Advocates Radio"Voices Carry for Animals" #419 (My 4th appearance & 2024 is booked!).
When a lady called in saying how she'd heard a 'rescue' being refused a donation by a check-out girl at a supermarket. As the girl said she did not know whether the money would go to rescue or euthanasia!
Now what if that 'rescue' had established Values in everything it does, then surely that conversation wouldn't have ended in that way?
So how do you establish Values Led Leadership?
It starts with identifying your Purpose -- What's the ultimate reason for your Social Entrepreneurship's existence?....think Really Big!
Then your Vision -- with a timescale in decades!
Then your Values -- Ask yourselves as an exercise in getting to your values
- What's the best thing about being part of this social entrepreneurship?
- What are we brilliant at?
- What would our competitors be envious of? *non-profits have competitors!
- If this team was a person, describe their characteristics.
- Look for recurring themes
Then identify their Meaning - aka not pointless coffee mug rubbish - so everyone, & I mean everyone, knows & understands.
Then ask yourself how do they show up in our Behaviours & Mindset -how do you demonstrate them everyday in everything you do from recruiting, to leadership, to growth?
Then what Supporting Systems do you have in place to prove you are building on them.
Values are crucial in the following areas for business
- Decision making
- Hiring incl. volunteers & freelancers
- Choosing clients & retaining them
- Choosing suppliers
- Performance management
- Employee engagement
- Profit.. even if you're a CIC & give it back you still need to generate to exist
- Value... for investment, succession or exit
- Brand & external messaging.
If you'd like help developing yourself &/or your team as a Value Led Leader then let's book a call to discuss
Or, I'm running a Tricres CRESCO 6 month programme starting 27th Nov 2023