What are core values and why do I need them for my startup business?
My core values were formed for me personally through a conversation with a previous patient. I was going through a transition/pivot point in my life (one of which I am still riding), and a previous patient called to encourage me. This was from a man twenty five years older than me and one I have a great deal of respect for. He told me that he would miss having me around and that he wanted to help me in any way he could. As I thanked him he told me that he appreciated how much I connected with him, encouraged him, and directed him! I literally out loud said, "sir, you just helped me write my core values for my business"! He replied with a humble, "glad I could help"!
Core values help define workflow and relationships with patients and employees. Core values are internal key performance indicators that establish expectations which transcends our mindset to relationships within our business.
Core values are very easy to google, copy, and then try to live up to, but core values should be more than that. Core values are more than what we would like to be, they are what we are; our code of conduct, personal beliefs, and the standard in which we live by. They should come from a sense of inward reflection of how we do everything.
Core values should be measurable. Having two little girls I have watched many childrens’s movies over the years and one of my favorite lines from “Despicable Me” is when the villain named Vector describes himself as a vector because he creates "crimes that have magnitude and direction". As simple as this sounds, this is how I have taught doctoral interns to write physical therapy goals for patients. Goals like core values should be vectors; they should have magnitude and direction.
My core values which I will post on my website and clinic walls ASAP to hold myself accountable are as follows.
1. Connect: The old saying is true, people don't care what you say until they see how much you care. It is my ethos, my very core belief that we are made for relationships. We are created in the image of God and to have relationship with our heavenly father; likewise we are made for relationships with other people. Establishing a solid authentic relationship with people is the foundation for creating lifetime patients and the key to teaching them how to take care of themselves for the rest of their lives.
2. Encourage: Once a connection is made, a real authentic connection, we can then encourage people to see what they cannot....potential. We can help them fight the worst critic in the room...themselves. People come to therapy in some of the most difficult times in their lives and it is an opportunity to encourage them to get not only the most out of their day, but the most out of their lives.
3. Direct: Once an authentic connection has been made and trust has been established, a patient will do whatever it takes to get better. Trust is a key element that will go a long way in establishing healthy relationships.
So if you are a tenured business owner, a brand new clinical practitioner, or a person who is eager to seek self growth, ask yourself, "what are my core values, but most importantly...why?”