In times of recession in the global economy, businesses are forced to take a closer look at their ability to expand by their own means. This calls for a strong identity and confidence. This calls for company values. But how do successful companies revitalized their DNA and succeed internally with highly motivated and skilled staff and externally on the global market place?
The world’s largest manufacturer of pumps and pump technology, Danish based Grundfos, has ever since its start in 1945 been focused on values and has never had red figures. Even despite the financial crisis they have become even stronger with huge investments in research and development and no debt. The values unite Grundfos and make the company something special. The values are at the core of the Grundfos identity and on June 20 the entire organization will work with a set of revitalized values.
The world is changing and so is Grundfos, more rapidly than ever. In this mode of constant development it is necessary to check the company values from time to time to make sure that they are relevant to the business and market of today and to make sure that they reflect the thinking and language of the current employees.
- A large part of the explanation why we decided to revitalize the values now is that we have great ambitions for the future. We want to expand our company both geographically and into new areas of business. In this process there is the risk of forgetting who we are. And we don’t want that to happen. The “old” value statements were written more than ten years ago when Grundfos was a smaller, less globalised company. A new generation of people has entered the company, seeing the company with new eyes, and we have to bring the value statements up to date to make sure that they are still relevant. We are not talking about new values, but we need to tune the values to match Grundfos of today, says Carsten Bjerg, CEO and Group President.
- We need to be united in our values to have a strong profile in the market. We need to be recognized as Grundfos everywhere we do business so that customers and other business partners know what to expect from us, says Mr Bjerg.
Through dialogue and involvement from staff and leaders from various corners of the organization, six rephrased values have been made: Sustainable, open and trustworthy, focused on people, independent, partnership and relentlessly ambitious.
- The validation process opened our eyes to the need of local interpretation of the values. Not in the sense that we have different values from one country to the next, by no means, but the values have to be interpreted and understood in a local context. The values were originally born out of the long history of Grundfos as a Danish industrial company, and we have to acknowledge this and at the same time bring the values into the local context of our 80 companies around the world. This interpretation does not emerge if we just communicate the values in writing. People need to sit down with their colleagues locally and discuss what each of the values means, Mr Bjerg explains.
June 20 is the day of values for 17,000 people
Now the next major milestone in the value roll-out is the 24-hour event on June 20. On this day all 17,000 employees at Grundfos will attend workshops to discuss what the values mean and how they are used. During the workshops all employees will have the opportunity to tell their version of the values via text messages, photos and video uploads on a global value website.
- We will hear 17,000 voices, discussing the values and what they mean to us and feeding our value stories into the value website to create one big story about the Grundfos values. I am sure all these stories will give us valuable input for our business in the long view, and can be used when we introduce new employees, when we are to prepare meetings with colleagues from other countries, when we need examples for customer presentations and in many other situations in everyday business, the CEO of Grundfos explains.
The value day will take place in all companies and locations within the Grundfos Group. That also goes for Grundfos in North America.
For more information please contact: Head of Public Affairs & Public Relations, Dan Prangsgaard, (+1) 913 608 6046, firstname.lastname@example.org