At their simplest values are those things we want to have in our lives so much that we put them above other things.

So if I was a person who placed high value on looking great I might well spend a pay rise on a new outfit whereas someone else who valued excitement might spend it on water skiing lessons.

In 1979 Rokeach defined values as “abstract ideas” that represent a person’s beliefs about modes of conduct or ideal end states, but are not associated with any particular object or situation. Schwartz (1992) suggested that values represent concepts or beliefs about desirable end-states or behaviours that transcend specific situations, guide selection, or evaluation of behaviour and events, and are ordered by relative importance.

Michael Henderson a corporate anthropologist, says that values are simply “the sum of our preferences and priorities” (2003). Preferences are what we would rather have in our lives than do without. Priorities indicate how important each preference is in relation to another.

In their natural state our values sit in our unconscious. They do a good job there, helping us find meaning and motivate ourselves to get things done. It is difficult, however, to deliberately use your values to drive your life at work or home if you don’t ‘know’ what your values are.

Working with a leading online values profiling tool we can use the Minessence Values Framework to explore the values that matter most to individuals, groups and even whole organisations. There are 128 distinct and different values in the framework and each of us has a unique values profile which illuminates why some things we love while others move us to anger or frustration.

Working with the tool is not quick and will take at least 30 minutes. If you would like to take a look click here

When you have finished you can decide if you would like to purchase a copy of your profile report. Prices start at GBP £25

Thinking about going deeper?

You have a choice of Minessence Group licensed values practitioners including:

Jackie has been practicing with the MVI since 2005. She works directly with clients and licences others to draw upon the framework. Jackie contributes articles to LinkedIn and writes on the topic of research and values on her Blog

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