Recently, we’ve looked at ways to further reinforce our values and ensure they are integral to every team member and everything we do across our solution design, system installation, asset management and fire compliance. To that end, we’ve been working through a program with Integrity and Values, a leading provider of bespoke behavioural change, leadership profiling, executive coaching and team development.
As DEM Fire Managing Director Tom Marshall explains, the process has been positive. “It’s been fantastic. We’ve got so much out of it. Ultimately, it gives you a great place to make decisions from, to open up communication and to challenge all of us to be completely open and accountable in everything we do.”
Tom came across Integrity and Values at a conference a few years ago, and he found its approach immediately refreshing.
“We had done quite a bit of work previously on company vision, but it always felt like something was missing. In most cases, vision statements seem to be aspirational, about somewhere you hope to be in five years’ time, and that’s not always effective.”
Tom saw that the Integrity and Values method could offer more immediate benefits to the DEM Fire team – and ultimately our customers. “They take a different spin so our vision isn’t actually a place we want to be in the future. It’s about the journey, and the values that hold that together, starting now.”
Integrity and Values was founded 30 years ago by executive management and organisational change specialist Jennifer Elliott, a Telstra Business Women of the Year Award Winner in 1997.
Jennifer’s thirst for knowledge is one element that helps Integrity and Values stand apart from organisations offering similar services. “I am a researcher, so everything we do is grounded in real data. Our integrity and values profiling, for instance, is a psychometric tool that is tested and fully validated for effectiveness.”
The core purpose of Jennifer’s training is to assess how people are currently operating as leaders and if that directly aligns with company vision. They then design a program to close any gap between vision and performance. The company provides bespoke solutions for every client, consisting of integrated programs such as vision and values, effective communication and leadership in action.
DEM Fire has now been working with Integrity and Values for close to two years. The first step was to refine the DEM Fire company vision. It’s now finalised as ‘uncompromising in our commitment to fire safety’, and it’s at the core of attitudes and actions across the entire business.
Jennifer observes that difficulties in refining company vision are common, and it comes down to a misconception that a company vision is about marketing. “A vision is absolutely not about marketing. It’s a tool, not a slogan, and it’s an internal driver of the business.”
With the company vision in place, the DEM Fire leadership team members were able to complete a range of workshops focusing on putting that vision into action. As Jennifer explains, “For many people, the workshops are challenging, as it’s about looking inward. We also make them fun however, with no blame and 100% responsibility.”
The DEM Fire management team, including Tom, Gary Marshall, Tanya Sampson, Campbell Steer and Janice Marshall, have completed the program and are in the process of rolling it out across the entire employee base.
Tom believes it will benefit the whole company. “I think it’s been really quite a challenging journey for the management team. It’s been intense at times, but we’ve all benefited. We now take the concept of ‘uncompromising in our commitment’ and apply it to every decision we make and everything we do across operations, services and customer relationships.”