Espoused values

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Espoused values
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Espoused values are "normative statements of desired outcomes or conditions that an organization believes ought to exist. However, espoused values do not become basic underlying assumptions automatically unless they work effectively and repetitively over time" (Hernandez S. R., O'Connor S. J. 2009, s. 103).

It should be mentioned that beliefs, despite similar definitions, are not the same thing as espoused values. The main difference is that beliefs provide cognitive justification for organizational operations/actions, while values provide the emotional energy and also motivation to fulfill them (actions) (Hernandez S. R., O'Connor S. J. 2009, s. 103).

While choosing the right values for company, the person should be aware of why "those" values and what is their use. They should do three things: satisfy the needs of the entrepreneurs (or employees), meet the needs of all employers (the company) and also satisfy other stakeholders (for example purchasers/clients, investors, local communities in which the company operates and also the society as whole. However, espoused values cannot differ from the "mission" of the company, they should be clearly connected with the unique character or the function of the organization (Barrett R. 2014, s. 156).

Types of espoused values

Some people indicate two types of values as following (Barrett R. 2014, s. 156):

The first of the mentioned types of values is something that everyone considers extremely important for the functioning of the organization. For example, in a chemical factory, employee safety and environmental protection should be considered as fundamental values. Against that, the operational value is the value that allows the efficient functioning of the organization. For instance, values such as teamwork and trust should be treated as operational values - they affect all workers at the company. The actual combination of core values and operational values will depend on the unique function or unique nature of the organization (Barrett R. 2014, s. 156).


Author: Urszula Bochenek