3 Risks of Not Knowing Your Value and What You Can Do About It

Last week, I posted on my Thursday Thoughts ValueMapping™ Video Blog about Value at Risk. Since then I’ve had some great dialogue on the topic so I thought I would expand here while offering some solutions.

“What’s your value?” That’s a pretty heavy question isn’t it? Let me be more specific: What’s your individual value to your customer? What’s your individual value to your company? What’s your company’s value to your community? What’s your company’s value to its employees? What’s your company’s value to its customers?

If you are a leader, executive or entrepreneur and you haven’t asked these questions, why not? If you are a leader, executive or entrepreneur and you have asked any or all of these questions but not dedicated time to find your answers, why not? Because guess what; your employees and customers have and they expect and are demanding an answer! So what’s the hold up? A newly appointed CEO once told me jokingly (but she was totally and nervously serious), “How the hell can I sell value when our own people wouldn’t know it if it hit them in the face?”

If your head has just blown off your shoulders, you’re offended or slightly frustrated; I am sorry…but good! After more than 700 engagements with dozens of companies, employees, leaders and organizations, here’s 180 seconds of content which I’ve found to be “value motivators.” 

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A Lesson In Value From First Responders

2017 has been anything but quiet for natural disasters. We have had hurricanes, earthquakes, drought, floods and most recently;  the strong Santa Ana winds blowing over southern California creating the third largest disastrous wildfire on record. More than 200,000 acres of land have been burned, over 8,000 firefighters with heavy equipment and helicopters are doing whatever it takes to keep growing the percentage of fires contained in the area; and still, only 35% of the wildfires are contained.

During this time, we marvel at the courage, strength, dedication and commitment of First Responders and those who support them. Firefighters, local police and paramedics are risking their lives working around the clock and through the night to help save families and evacuate people from the raging fires that are rapidly spreading and destroying everything in their path. Their impact is evident as lives are saved, homes secured, people and animals are transported to safety. When people ask these men and women what they do and they say “I’m a fireman,” “I’m a first responder,” or “I’m a paramedic,” we are grateful and express our thanks for their bravery, efforts, contributions and heroic acts.

All of this led me to think about the everyday heroes who we work with, sit next to in our community and meet in business. What do they say when they are asked, “What do you do?” and how do we respond when they say, “I’m a lawyer,” “I’m a garbage man,” “I’m an electrician,” or “I’m a secretary?” We often do not get to see or take time to think about their impact and we likely don’t consider them heroes. Why not? 

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Your Value: Trick or Treat

It’s Halloween and that means costumes, candy and spooky things. Which got me thinking, that sounds a lot like the concept of “value.” Now, you may be asking, “what in Hellraiser’s name are you talking about Al?” Bear with me for a moment and allow me to indulge you in some treats with real impact.

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The Value Of Our Labor

Regardless of whether we work or not on Labor Day, the September holiday remains a significant cultural passing of the baton from summer to fall. As millions of Americans enjoy the day today free from the constraints of the time clock, we value the time with family, relaxation, great food, amazing sights we see. For those working on the clock, perhaps they value the increased business growth, exposure and opportunity. This drove me to consider the “value” we all share on this day as well as the 364 other days of the year.

According to the U.S.Department of Labor, the Labor Day holiday is “a creation of the labor movement and is dedicated to the social and economic achievements of American workers.” Labor Day is a “yearly national tribute” to the “contributions workers have made to the strength, prosperity and well-being of our country.”

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How to Communicate your Value to Grow your Business


Let me ask you 2 questions.
My first one: What is your value?
And my second one: What are your values?
Were you able to answer these quite quickly because you had already done the reflection or you had no words?
Well, here is some help for you.
This episode.

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Amazon: The Undisputed King of Value

$1 Billion in sales in one day! That’s what it is estimated that Amazon did during their Amazon Prime Day recently. But how is this possible for a company which just over 20 years ago was not on anyone’s radar except for avid readers intrigued by the ability to buy books online? The answer…VALUE!

Amazon understands that true Value is not just about the “what” and “how” you buy, but the “impact” of the what and how.

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One Battle VC’s and Start-ups Have to Win to Survive!

Values Versus Value

It can be an exciting and exhilarating time. Imagine how it must feel to be a confident entrepreneur armed with your ambition and a venture backed war chest. Rules be damned, it’s time to change the world.

…and this is a good thing, until of course, it’s not.

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The One Question That Could Ignite Your Company’s Future

One question can make the difference in the direction of your company. The answer to that question can be a powerful pivot point for your value story.

The one question? What is the one word that you feel best defines your value?

The answer could describe an individual’s value, a product’s value or the entire company’s value. Sometimes the answer comes easily, and other times people really struggle with it. It is a riveting process to see.

Why do we start out with this question? It’s like the science of distillation—a refining process that collects the pure essence of a substance. The challenge to come up with one word prompts people to focus their thoughts about what makes them, their product—or their organization—special.

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Challenge Your Assumptions and Gain a Deeper Understanding of Your Value

When we challenge our assumptions about our value, we can see ourselves in a whole new light. This perspective shift can be powerful.

During a recent customer engagement, I had a conversation with an employee in the company’s housekeeping department. “What one word describes your value?” I began. His answer? “Trash.” Uh Oh. I didn’t know if he thought he was trash, his company was trash or his life was trash. After our Value Mapping session, which takes people through a quick but very deep self-reflective process, his outlook changed.

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Know this before signing a big software development contract

know before signing

This week, we officially entered the world of software product development. By that I mean we signed a “Statement of Work” to formally commence design and development of the Value Mapping™ customer portal and interface. Two years ago, I’d have told you I never saw this coming. Sure, I’ve worked with web companies designing websites over the years. I also helped build a cloud-based platform for integrating physician recruitment and marketing. Heck I’ve even thrown back a few cold ones with some amazing coders and developers, but actually building my own product from scratch? Whaaaaat?  And yet here I am as the founder of Value Mapping™ staring down the most challenging, yet exciting project i’ve ever taken on talking Agile, DevOps, User Experience, Acceptance Testing and SQL Database. Whaaaat-Whaaaaat???

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