You live according to your core values.
I’m not saying you should live by your core values or that you need to dream up a list of core values to live by. I’m telling you one of the most painful truths about life: You already live according to your core values. Already. Every day. Show me your life and I will show you your core values.
Let’s back up a moment. Core values are a hot topic these days. Amazon presently sells over 2600 books with the word “Core Values” in the title. Nearly every corporation has a brochure or plaque or page in the employee handbook that present a shiny bullet-point list of core values. A few years ago this started becoming popular in churches. Nowdays any church without a clearly presented list of core values runs the risk of being accused of lack of focus.
Being values-driven is important, but having a well-articulated list of qualities that you or your company hope to live by doesn’t get the job done. You have to ask what it is that you really have there on your list. What most people don’t understand is that there are really two different kinds of core values.