Meraki Consulting Partner

MVV - Mission Vision Values

MVV – Mission Vision Values

Our Personal North Star

ICYMI, there was a blurb in my Master the Art of Strategic Planning blog that mentioned the importance of establishing your MVV – Mission, Vision, Values – in order to develop an effective strategic plan. 

During my initial discovery call with new clients, I request a copy of their MVV’s. As someone who was “blessed” with a critical eye, it’s important for me to understand the who, what, where, and why of the organizations I work with for two reasons: 

  1. There are organizations who have values that are not aligned with mine and because of this, I cannot in good faith work with them to help them win at any cost. If people and the planet are being harmed for shareholder wealth or to fund golden parachutes, count me out. 

  2. In order to effectively coach the individuals involved and guide the planning process, I need to know the lens through which every decision is evaluated. If your stated values are Innovate and Collaborate, I will look for innovation and collaboration in every single square centimeter of your organization. [This is where that “critical eye” comes in handy.] Every question I ask will be framed such that the innovative and collaborative value will be inherent in the answer. 

Here’s the shocking response I receive from a select few…

When consulting with organizational leaders I am often surprised to hear, “We don’t really have that written out anywhere,” followed by the question, “Why do we need that for strategic planning and growing the company?” 

My response…Great question, here’s why you need them: 

  • Values are lived. In order to be lived they must be clearly stated and understood by every single person in the organization.
  • Values guide you. Every single question that gets asked…Who do we hire? Should we open a second location? How much should we spend on marketing? Which vendor should we go with? How should we structure our hiring, onboarding, and training processes?…and countless others, should have an answer that is aligned with the stated values. 
  • Values are judged by your customers. The values you profess to have that are embodied by your team and expressed to the outside world in their actions serve as the basis for customer decisions. 
  • Values keep you on the path in pursuit of your Vision. If you stray from your values, by default you stray from your vision. Then you become the blind leading the blind. How did that work out for the 3 blind mice? Not so good. 
  • Values dictate the price you will pay. If you value human life and your product has caused harm, you gladly pay the price to correct your errors and ensure the restoration of health and well-being. The fingers we could point, right!?!
  • Values govern your board of directors. If you want your board to be effective in their support of the organization, its people, and the greater good, they need values to serve as pillars. 
  • Values shape your company culture. If you want to be one of the best places to work, your values are clear in every aspect of recruiting, hiring, and onboarding. 
  • Values drive results. If you want to lead your respective industry or market, your values will be the forces that inspire your people to show up and win. 

This is usually where I pause and ask if I should continue the list or expand upon any previously mentioned reason. 

The answer usually involves a ‘No, that’s quite a list of things to consider’ or ‘Wow, I guess we should start there and get those hammered out.’ And so we do. 

Out of curiosity, what are your top 5 values? For those who like to play trivia games…what are mine? (Hint: they are embodied in this post.)