To kickstart our ILM podcast series, we spoke to Judith Barton, Founder of the British School of Coaching – market leaders in providing accredited courses for coaches, mentors and trainers in Asia, Europe and the Middle East.
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In our compelling conversation, Judith begins by noting that companies may experience “wobbles” during the peaks and troughs of running a business – whether related to finances, confidence or customer service – particularly when values are not anchored in the very foundations that make up the organisation. Without values, foundational integrity is shaky at best.
She goes on to say that environments in which business is conducted may change on a day-to-day basis through legislative changes or market changes. However, it’s the company values that holds an organisation firm, giving it stability and steadfastness, enabling leaders to make values-led decisions during difficult times.
“It’s very easy to join the direction that a river flows,” says Barton. “It’s much more difficult to cut across the current when it’s needed. Solid values hold people accountable to do just that.”
Judith notes that organisations often approach their values by creating a list of words – typically qualities like integrity, ethics or professionalism. However, she points out that this is just a starting point. Organisations would do well to explain those values further to their employees, removing any possible ambiguity about how those value-words apply to work and customer service delivery.
For the British School of Coaching, values are summed up effectively:
- Rigour (how work is done)
- Recognition (attained through referral, recommendation and revenue)
- Reputation (being a market leader)
These values form a part of the organisations DNA and underpin everything that its members do, from how its people show up every day to how mistakes are managed and achievements celebrated.
In closing, Judith leaves us with a pearl of wisdom, encouraging leaders and teams to “listen to their heads, their hearts and their guts” – to remember that when something feels “off”, it’s very often an indication that values are being challenged, stretched or even broken.
Access this delightful conversation with an industry leader in coaching and mentoring - listen to the podcast here!