A Gallup poll found only 27 percent of employees believe in their employer’s stated values. Organizations create value statements, but do they live them?
Having recently attended an Eagle Scout Award Ceremony, I reflected on the event, realizing the core values of scouting are also those necessary for healthy organizations.
Scout Law states, “A Scout is trustworthy, loyal, helpful, friendly, courteous, kind, obedient, cheerful, thrifty, brave, clean, and reverent.”
If organizational leaders would promote these key values, the guiding principles would create workplaces where employees respect their leaders and live the values.
Having taught English for ten years, I vividly remember the last day of my final school year when my principal came into my room. “Connie, we need to talk. You have failed too many students and it doesn’t look good down town. I need you to change the grades.”
I responded, “Excuse me. I didn’t fail any students. They failed themselves. If they can’t perform the skills on the 9th grade level, you are setting them up for failure in 10th grade by promoting them.”
That was my last day to teach public school. I walked away. I could not respect my principal or live with myself if I socially promoted the students as he requested.
Former Secretary of State, Donald Rumsfeld, a Distinguished Eagle Scout said during a Duty to Country breakfast hosted by the National Eagle Scout Association, “These are important values; they help young people have the courage to make right choices when faced with difficult decisions later in their lives.”
Louis Gravance, a consultant who helped Bank of America recently navigate a cultural shift says, “If companies want employees to internalize values, they need to connect with the feelings or emotions people have about their work. For most people, it’s not what they want to do that matters, it’s what they want to be. What are people’s goals for themselves and how can that be tied to corporate goals.”
That means valuing the employees first. Something that Eagle Scouts demonstrate.