Mixing Personal Values with Job Values

by Brick Jackson

Many times what people have for their own personal values become different when they enter the workplace. This can happen for a number of reasons as employees often times lose sight of what is important to them as they work to pay the bills and stay employed often times instead of looking at what is best for their career path and what is going to make them happy.

When it comes to defining job values, it is critical to think about what is most important to you so you can understand what you need to do to accomplish that goal and it will also help when you are managing others so you have a better understanding of where they are and what they are trying to accomplish. Here is a list of the four main job values, the characteristics of each and some possible roadblocks for those who fall into each one of the buckets.

1. Advancement – this type of person is strictly focused on moving up in the organization and is willing to give up other aspects of their life in order to put their career as the main focus. They are willing to put in long hours and they are very independent and self-confident. These employee types of very responsible and are in tune with the goals of the company because they are trying to forge ahead in the organization.

As a manager of people like this, there are some potential stumbling blocks for your team. There is the possibility of jealously as the person gets promoted or is given more opportunities on projects as well as you need to make sure that the employee is dividing the team by being too aggressive in going after what they want. There is also a chance because the person does not maintain a proper work life balance that they will get burned out over time.

2. Security – this type of employee is very loyal to the company and works hard while seeking long term employment and stability. They are more concerned with performing well for the company instead of worrying about how their performance is going to impact their career path. They are more likely to follow the rules and policies of the company to make sure their job status is not put at risk.

From a manager perspective, you need to watch for these employees clashing with employees focused on advancement as the person focused on security can have conflict with them. Because they can be set in their ways, they may be resistant to change and a landscape where re-organizations are constant and departments are in a state of flux. They tend to stay in the same job role for long periods of time without improving their skill set.

3. Freedom – these employees are focused more on the freedom from management and the rules of a company instead of looking to be upwardly mobile. They often times become very specialized in one field thus making them the subject matter expert. They will often times thrive in a start up company or type of environment while struggling in a company that is rigid in their rules and processes.

As a manager, these types of employees can be very difficult to supervise because of their dislike for rules and order. They may not be willing to do things out of their specialized field and they often times prefer to work alone then functioning in a group or team setting.

4. Work Life Balance – this type of employee is focused on being able to balance their career, their family life and other relationships that are important to them. They are often times looking for flexibility in their work schedule as they have families and have different events to attend to at school or day care. They care about work but it does not take priority over everything else in their life.

From a manager standpoint, it can lead to some drama and tension in the workplace as the people can be affected by what is going on at home. They often times are not concerned with their own development as a worker and are not looking to be rewarded which can lead to performance that is just “getting by”.



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