Value vs Values – are they really so different?

I’ve known Sally at Sylo for a few years. She’s an expert in people management – or Human Resources in corporate speak – and she really helped me when I needed some expert help.

Today, we started chatting about a new idea. Can you link the value we offer customers to the values of your people?

It made me think. Same word; different meanings.

But yes; I actually think they are fundamentally linked.

The values of the business will often be directly linked to the value you offer your customers. If you take pride in looking after your staff, there is a better than average chance you’ll apply the same approach to your customers. If you don’t communicate your strategy to your staff, what’s the chance of them sharing the future direction of the company with their customer contacts?

The equation of Happy Employees = Happy Customers = Happy Profits is often quoted. Keep your staff happy and the profitability will come.

So happy employees, who feel valued, engaged and motivated will support your customers and offer them real value, which, in itself, customers are prepared to pay extra for.

The link is there.

Customers want to work with suppliers who share common values too. If there is mismatch in culture, that can be a huge inhibitor to a long term relationship.

You could even take this to the next stage and develop a value proposition, not just to your prospects and customers, but for your employees as well.

What are their real needs? Have you validated that you really understand them? Do different parts of your organisation have different needs and therefore should be communicated with in a different way? Wherever I’ve worked, there’s always been a different culture within the remote working staff, compared with office-based staff… but the messaging style and information is often the same. To coin a phrase, one person’s essential email is another person’s junk mail.

So actually, value and values are closely linked. You could even argue that having a strategy for staff engagement is similar to having a strategy for your customers. Both have needs that only you can satisfy.

So next time you’re thinking of offering value to customers, think of your staff too. Use your internal values to your benefit as they are directly linked to offering real value to your customers.