My Impressions of the Global Barrett NVA Meeting 26.-27.9.16 in Toronto, Canada

My impressions on the two days conference of the global Barrett National Values Assessment group- 26.-27.9 in Toronto:

In my work I have been fortunate to guide many organizations and top-teams to create a more conscious organizational culture based on mutually agreed and defined values. It is amazing to see how long-term conflicts and resentements in a team melt away when they shift from a transactional or positional communication style to a transformational value-based conversation.

Teams become more productive, can overcome difficult situations more easily and create a space where mutual support and personal learning is possible. Focusing on their core-values also give leaders a powerful perspective to become effective in leading their teams and go home more fullfilled.

In my experience as consultant for organizational development the Richard Barrett Values-Assessment-Tools serve these conversations well.

The results of the survey create a accurate basis to understand the essence of the identity of a leader, a team or a whole organizations.It both strenthen the trust to act from the inner values and the perceived entrophie (the conflicts/mismanagement in the team or the organization) can be reduced efficently.

The answers to three simple questions (which values describe me as a person, how do we operate today and how do we need to operate to be successful in the future) are mapped to 7 levels of values. These results are a mirror of the conscisousness in the leader / team / organization. Creating a aspirational vision for transformation based from this mirror has been proven to not only make the work more satisfying and relationships more meaningful but actually create better bottom-line results.

Does this approach work for large systems like nations? Can it help for policy-makers and stakeholders in nations to work toward a common direction? Is it possible that parties with very oppositve belief-systems to sit on one table and tackle the challenging task to make the right adjustments and ultimately create conversations which help nations to adapt to the challenges in the current developments which are described as „VUKA world“ (acronym for volatile, uncertain, complex, ambigous).

Can we even have a conversation where nations which are bases from very different cultural backround and traditions can learn how to create values based society? Would a National Values Assessment serve Germany in dealing with the challenges my country is facing like the growing gap in political views or how to deal with the refugees in the country? What can my part be in this?I arrived at the conference with many questions, hopes- and concerns.The dialog we had during the conference exeeded my expectations, gave me hope and direction. We learned from each other how the results can be used to- create stronger communites,- foster deep dialog between policiy makers- change the conversation in the countries.

The NVA (National Values Assessment) has been conducted in 28 countries globaly.

Here some examples:
– In Sveden the survey is conducted already in the 7th year. The data shows clearly the trends how the identity of the society changes.
– Island has created a strong turnaround after their economic meltdown- using the NVA as a basis for dialog and co-creating the future with the citizen.
– In Singapore you can clearly see how the dialog on values is strengthening a whole nation.
– In Australia a partnership of many stakeholders created a nationwide initiative to initiate change the country and make the citizen own this journey.
– In Slovakia the NVA is planned as a basis to understand how to encourage the young generation to stay in the country and stop the brain-drain.
– The newest survey results from kingdom of Saudia Arabia showed us that human values are truly a great basis for a healthy conversations to help the younger generations express their desire to grow.

The approach and the involved players are different in every nation.

On the second day of the conference we were reflecting why we are doing it, what is a realistic expectation and what is a right perspective to initiate such a nation-wide conversation. The group agreed that it is key to have a clear answer to the question „why do you conduct the NVA- what problem do you want to solve“.

Meeting passionate and committed colleagues from the world who have conducted National Values Survey in their country strenghend my trust in the possibility to support the change even on a national level.

Would this kind of initiative support Germany in these difficult times? I am convinced about it. What it needs is a strong network of supporters and a clear focus. If you want to be part of that team or know of an organization who would like to support this initiative please reach out to me.

One message came across clearly: Even if we focus on a large „system“ like a nation- you cannot just „fix“ the mechanics in the system or expect others to change. Ultimately the change you want to see in the world- starts with you.

Leading your organization  with clear values are key – Facilitator Hendrik Backerra participated the NVA Meeting 2016

If you would like to use the power of the values-culture in your organization, please don’t hesitate to contact us. We’re always looking forward to new exchange!