Climate and Culture
Although we all come into the world with some innate personality traits (the ‘nature’ side of the nature/nurture debate) for our entire life, we also ‘drink-in’ the experiences that are fed to us by our senses which slowly start to evolve our beliefs and attitudes, and shape our general behavior (the ‘nurture’ side of the equation). Some of these experiences are given to us by our parents and teachers and other influential people, who will often be instrumental in crystallizing our moral or ethical attitudes and values in particular. However, many other experiences will help to evolve our personal beliefs, especially if these experiences are similar or serve to reinforce our past views.
To illustrate what we mean by this, at a simple level, our expectation or belief that a car engine will run when we turn the ignition is based upon our past experience of this occurring successfully. For more sophisticated experiences, the same process operates. Hence our attitudes to people, our faith, our likes and dislikes in food, cars, home décor and art, our interest in certain pastimes or sports and even (more dramatically) our attitudes to war, personal sacrifice and death are all shaped by our progressive experiences and their overall consistency. These ultimately form a coherent and relatively consistent set of personal values to which we can regularly refer to make many of our judgments or decisions about the world and the future situations that we encounter.
The more people’s values can be understood, the more an organization can take account of its employee feedback and act in more positively aligned ways. The “values assessment” (see link below) helps individuals to discover their own most important clusters of values and to even to better appreciate the values of the organization of which they are a part. The Values assessment has five clusters of values. These are Harmony, Tradition, Achievement, Independence and Power.
The “values assessment” gives individuals the opportunity to carry out a self-assessment in terms of the values cluster they most often adopt, and their secondary cluster (plotting the results on a grid for maximum visual impact). Individuals end up with a personalized report of results which also then shows where efforts to better appreciate their own and others values may be best concentrated in the future. The $15 spent on this assessment is therefore well-worth the investment in taking it.