Like all good organisations, our team worked collaboratively to develop our values for our businesses. We implemented Patrick Lencioni’s approach of including values that are both non-negotiable and aspirational.  That is, the non-negotiable focus on what we cannot compromise and the aspirational focus on the values we aspire to have happening in our business.   In our professional lives everything we do coincides with these values and we have them clearly visible for all to see on the walls of our office.

Our values provide clarity around the types of clients we want to work with, the partners we want to be associated with and the employees we want to have within our team. It also sets the standard for reward and recognition and the culture we are looking to develop.  If partners, employees, and clients don’t tick all our boxes and align with our values then it isn’t the right fit and in the long term the relationship isn’t going to work.

When it comes to my personal life, until recently I had never really reflected on my values and how important they were to me. What I have found is that in some of my relationships I was compromising my values and I didn’t like the behaviours I was displaying or observing as a result of this. I also hadn’t appreciated the impact some people can have on your own life who don’t aspire or stand for similar values to you.

Your values are also closely related to whether or not you are extrinsically or intrinsically motivated. Those who are extrinsically motivated are motivated by external influences like money, title and status. Whereas others who are intrinsically motivated are motivated by internal influences like being part of a team, continuous improvement, challenges, growth or working on a challenging project.

It wasn’t until I actually started to reflect on those relationships that are hard work, energy sucking and often stressful that I connected the dots between values and motivation and realised how closely they are aligned.

So if there are people in your life who have a negative impact on your mindset, maybe stop and think about what motivates them. I have no doubt that all the things that they are motivated by will not be in alignment with you.

Don’t underestimate the importance of familiarising yourself with ones values and motivation, because if you compromise what is important to you, you are the one who will be disappointed or left feeling drained. Take the time to understand what motivates you and what values you want to live your life by. Whether you are looking for a new job, or just making new friends, life is way too short to be investing time and effort into relationships that just aren’t the right fit.