Our Vision and Core Values Story
Where our vision describes why we exist and what we create our Core Values describe how we do it.
Our shared values are at the very heart of everything we do and guide our behaviours, actions and decisions. They are our culture and describe how we behave internally and externally and underpin and guide our long-term strategy. Importantly they shape our reputation and our brand.
Everyone within our team is expected to demonstrate these values in their day to day behaviour and also to encourage others to demonstrate them in theirs.
Our story starts in 2014 with a book called Delivering Happiness by the CEO of Zappos; Tony Hsieh.
It’s certainly not an obvious place to start.
Zappos is a company in the USA selling shoes online so there doesn’t seem to be any similarities with the provision of childcare by Hopes & Dreams.
But Zappos built a very successful business by focusing on customer satisfaction. The Hopes & Dreams Childcare Group is also focused on delivering great customer satisfaction so we were interested in how they managed it.
It turns out that the primary factor in their success was their focus on Core Values. Put simply Core Values of a company are the values that form the foundation on which the people in the company perform their work and conduct themselves.
Zappos involved their whole staff team with identifying, defining and agreeing their Core Values.
Then Zappos built its business around those Core Values. From recruitment and performance management, to reward structures, customer interactions and corporate strategy, decisions were all influenced and aligned to the Zappos Core Values.
And it proved to be very effective. Working for Zappos became much sought after. Zappos were able to recruit the very best people, whose behaviours supported and drove the Zappos Core Values. As a result customer satisfaction soared.
Given the advantages that Zappos gained from focusing on Core Values we were encouraged to spend some time exploring what the Hopes & Dreams Core Values look like. With hindsight we may have got caught up in the whole Zappos thing. So much so that we ended up adopting the ten Zappos Core Values in their entirety.
They were genuinely a great fit for how we saw ourselves, already had a proven track record and were much better than what we came up with at the time.
Having an “off the shelf” solution certainly allowed us to jump right in and the initial signs were very encouraging.
During our reflections on our Core Values we also, almost by chance, defined our Vision.
In a moment of inspiration the phrase Happy Children, Positive Futures was put forward and unanimously adopted. It is brilliant in its simplicity and accurate description of why Hopes & Dreams exists.
So in 2014 we embarked on our Vision & Core Values journey.
Subsequently we have revisited both our Vision and our Core Values on several occasions, to remind ourselves of their meaning, to engage our whole team with their importance and ensure they remain relevant as our World changes.
The most recent update was during the latter stages of 2019 and the start of 2020.
Our Vision had stood the test of time really well but it was clear that our Core Values needed to be updated. People had come and gone in the five years since the Core Values were adopted and our people were different. So we embarked once again on the process of describing and defining what it takes to be a “Hopes & Dreams” person.
The outcome of this exercise is that we have simplified and created further focus on our Core Values. We have also gone further than ever before in defining the underlying behaviours that support, as well as those that undermine, our Core Values.
For the first time we created our printed “Bringing Our Core Values to Life – A Guide For All Team Members” that is provided to every member of staff when they join the Hopes & Dreams family.
If you are interested you can download a copy of our Guide here.
Our Vision and Core Values helpfully identify our Why, Who we are and How we do things at Hopes & Dreams. What we stand for is clear to us, to the families we serve and to other childcare professionals.
Our Vision and Core Values allows us to attract people like us. People who want to make a difference for children and their families. Great people with the same values and who share similar behaviours can identify with what we are creating and how we operate.
Our focus on our culture supports our people to perform and do their best work and in turn our people create our culture. It allows us to provide consistently high standards of service and exceed customers’ expectations across all of our settings.
We are no Zappos but we have seen a lot of success already from our focus on our people.
And it continues to build.
Having said that we are also well aware that we have a long way to go. We are looking forward to the journey and creating Happy Children, Positive Futures as we go.
We’d love you to join our journey and become part of the Hopes & Dreams family.
We use communication to support each other and build and relationships. Communication is the foundation on which trust is created and is therefore vitally important. Trust allows is to build relationships.
We work together positive in a supportive environment to achieve more than we can as individuals. We are there for each other and recognise a fun place to work is where there is a high degree of trust and respect. It's fun when we work hard together and achieve success.
Our work requires us to do our best every minute of the day. It is almost impossible to care without a positive mindset and a passion to make a difference. To be the best we can be requires determination and an openness to take on challenges.
We are passionate about caring and consistently strive to deliver the best possible service. We should always be thinking how do te parents and children feel making sure that we deliver more than we would ourselves expect.
We are committed to be the best we can be to mazimise the positive impact we create for the children and families on the Isle of Man. We are not constrained by what has been done before, or our current abilities. We push ourselves to improve.