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unCon 2013 Session: The Unrecognized Value of Values

Moderators: Katie Rae and Mark Guadagnoli
Today at MassTLC unConference Katie Rae and
Mark Guadagnoli sparked a thought-provoking conversation on “the value of
values,” ranging from personal to organizational.  The session began by
touching on how values influence motives for a startup and the notion that
those values will empower people to make great decisions.  This inevitably
makes establishing values a crucial part of starting a company.
Staying true to the name of unConference,
participants broke into small groups to collaborate on a list of three values
we agreed were most crucial for a company – no matter the size or age – to
follow.  When the five groups came back together to share our chosen
values, conversation opened up about how values might intersect and how we can
make them actionable.
One of the major themes of the discussion was
creating a sense of community and establishing a culture within your company.
The entire room was more or less in agreement that “being human” is an
essential value.
Another hot topic was the intersection of
honesty, integrity, and ethics; where they overlap and where they deviate from
each other.  Questions were asked like “can someone have integrity but
still be dishonest?”  The debate of the interpretation of these values
really led the group to look at how we define our values and consequently, do
we even concretely know what they are?
When asked, we found that less than 5% of
participants in the session knew their company values offhand, revealing to the
group that first and foremost, your company needs to sit down and have the
conversation that nails down the concrete list of values.  In world of
jam-packed schedules, it’s preferable and more beneficial for a company to
spend a little time now on establishing values, than a lot of time later. 
And as one participant concisely put it, you don’t have time not to.
Shannon Todesca
CHEN PR: www.chenpr.com

@CHEN_PR

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