Every business has values. Or at least they should. They’re likely hung on a wall somewhere or are locked and loaded as the background on employees’ computers. Usually the business is created first, and then the values are articulated. Employees, from the top to the bottom, are then asked to internalize the company values and live them with conviction; a process which becomes a bit tricky given that the personal values can often conflict with company values.
If you’ve gotten to know us at all, it should come as no surprise that we did things a bit differently. Our values have literally built the foundation of our business. We’re by no means unique in this. Some incredible companies (like Patagonia) have been built the same way. We’re not claiming first tracks, but the sequencing of putting our values ahead of both our business model and our service offerings has most definitely defined Red Balloon Relations.
We did it this way because we wanted our day-to-day work to be so closely aligned with our personal values that, well, it wouldn’t feel like coming to work at all. We didn’t want that feeling of being torn between what I believe versus what the company believes. And, perhaps most importantly, we wanted to create something that was a reflection of ourselves. After all, isn’t that part of the reason that you go into business for yourself? Over the course of several blog posts, we’ll elaborate on each of the values, but for now, let me introduce you to them:
1. Act like a family. We’re in this thing together. We support one another and we call one another out when we need to do that too. Family meetings happen regularly.
2. Be sherpas. For each other and our clients. It’s not about having all the answers. It’s about having the skills to lead clients, and one another, to the peak of the mountain…and knowing what tools and supplies to use along the way.
3. Get naked. In other words: be creative and raw. Be you. Take chances. Have no fear. Embrace vulnerability.
4. Pop the cork and celebrate. Successes, failures, lessons, life….everything! All the time.
5. Hug it out. Avoid punishment, accept responsibility, and move on. Just don’t do this and number three at the same time.
6. Inspiration. It is our fuel. We give it and receive it not just daily, but as many times a day as we can.
These aren’t just words we use or nice things we talk about. Our values are our business. And we can’t wait to tell you more about each of them…stay tuned!
- Wee C