Values drive the behaviour of an organization. ToP values are highly participatory and assume the unlimited potential of every human being, the unique contribution that each person can bring, and the power that comes from working together.
If this is how you want your organization to operate, including the respect, creativity, innovation and community spirit that it brings, all ToP tools and methods will reinforce these values in your organization.
Alternatively, ToP methods can deeply engage your staff and stakeholders in describing the values that you already have or those that you want. Values are not slogans but rather are aspirational signposts that describe how you operate, not just in normal times, but especially in difficult times and when hard choices must be made by everyone. They are core to the mission of the organization.
The Courage to Lead Study grounds in real life experiences a new paradigm of leadership for which people are yearning. It concretizes new practices of leadership in the day to day joys and struggles that we all experience. New forms of leadership are within everyone’s grasp, but only courageous and genuine reflection on challenging situations, not vague abstractions, can make the new leadership explicit.
The Responsibility Module empowers groups by bringing clarity and surfacing the many tensions that exist when being accountable and taking responsibility for ones actions. It is a reminder and a generator of truly creative and innovation solutions to problems that must be solved, where there is never one ideologically “right” answer.
This is especially valuable for situations in which difficult choices must be made, and for providing context for those choices.
The Values Workshop names the most important values that an organization holds, so that they can be constantly remembered and used during those difficult times when those values are most needed. These values are not simple words of a slogan, but are the deep rooted ones that are practiced every day, and which inform your behaviour when there are no other guideposts or indicators to tell one how to operate. It also describes the types of behaviours that are acceptable between the most important stakeholders in the organization.
Allow 2-3 hours to get out the most important and informative values.
Pivotal Affirmation empowers individuals and groups by affirming the real situation of the group including all its possibilities and its limitations. It opens the door to creative responses where none may be been seen before.
Story Symbol Creation creates for yourself and any group the symbols and stories that you transmit to empower the group. It integrates the complexity and difficulties of work and life and reminds you what is important about your work.
Writers and artists are not needed for this exercise because this makes use of the storyteller and symbol creator that is latent in everyone. The results of this will become powerful reminders of the mission and purpose of the group.
Transestablishment Style builds one’s meditative council…those colleagues, alive or gone, on whom you mentally call for advice in the midst of life’s challenges. These colleagues might come from the establishment or the disestablishment who generally oppose one another, but might also be part of the transestablishment, those who operate beyond the other two and outside society’s normal structures to create the new that is needed for future generations.
The tool is used constantly to remind one of those iconic figures who are needed for inspiration and resolve.
Books written about ToP values include The Courage to Lead by R. Brian Stanfield, Bending History by John Epps, The Journey of Meaning at Work by John Epps
All ToP tools surface the deep-seated values that people in your organization already have, and allow for reflection and evolution toward the values they really need.