Sitting up in the evening, pushing in another hour at 22.00, you can often reflect about life. You can start thinking about the big questions of life. What is the meaning behind me sitting up, working longer, and harder to create something? As an entrepreneur, these questions don't disappear, but the answers I find make me more eager to work.
When you start working on an amazing idea there is only one thing certain: Your idea will change, but the people you work with will be the same. The thing that keeps a team together working towards the same goal will be our shared set of values. Who are we, why do we exist and what do we expect of ourselves and each other?
These are fundamental questions we keep asking ourselves in Young Sustainable Impact. We started as a small group of youth with completely different backgrounds. Although our experience was different we gathered around a common set of values. As youth, we had a shared feeling of responsibility to create the future we wanted to live in. To actually create this future we needed to combine knowledge and truly understand the challenges we face. This focus on taking responsibility through knowledge and understanding led to a community build-up of people all working towards our goal of creating a sustainable future.
Two approaches to values
As stated earlier, a set of values lay the foundation for how we act. Another approach to values is an accumulation of something. This goes back to a simple question I ask myself before everything I do and say: Does this add value or not? Does this comment add value to my co-worker? If not – there is no point in saying it. Does this company add more value than it takes from this planet? If not – there is no point of working with it.
Why does a value-based approach work?
When we communicate our approach to sustainability and how we work towards it, people are coming to us, eager to contribute. Authenticity in values attracts people with shared values. Shared values make any discussion easier and give people a guideline for making decisions, even in disagreements.
Text author: Amund Grytting Photography: Vilde Bang Foss