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The essence of a company extends beyond its services and products to its underlying culture and values. This understanding drove our recent Culture and Values Workshop, following our comprehensive rebranding effort earlier this year. This workshop was part of a key initiative to embed our defined values into the fabric of our organization—and show our team what it means to practice those values in action.  

Transitioning From M Corp to 11:59—and All That It Represents 

Our rebranding journey involved much more than just a visual update. We did an HGTV Teardown of the existing company. We rebuilt it from the foundation up starting with  reassessing  the vision, mission, and values. While previous workshops have been dedicated to rolling out the vision and mission statements, this workshop focused on our updated values to ensure that these values become part of our everyday practices. 

Fostering a Values-Driven Culture Means Bringing Your Whole Self to Work—Integrating Personal and Professional Values 

In planning our workshop, Dani (our Chief People Officer), Adam (our Onboarding and Training Specialist), and I were clear on one essential goal: to create a balanced mix of informative content and reflective practice. We aimed to introduce and explain 11:59's updated core values—curiosity, collaboration, integrity, commitment, and respect—while  guiding team members through  identifying and embracing their personal values. This approach stems from our belief that a genuinely values-driven culture at 11:59 requires a harmonious blend of the personal and professional. 

The workshop was designed  to communicate our values and embed them into everyday practice. Through a series of interactive sessions and real-world examples, we aimed to make these values tangible and actionable.  Then, once we got through the step-by-step guidelines of practicing our corporate values, we focused on marrying personal values with professional ones to foster an environment where employees feel comfortable and encouraged to bring their whole selves to work This alignment is crucial to enhancing job satisfaction and promoting authenticity within the workplace.  

Participants were engaged in activities facilitating personal value discovery, ensuring each individual could see how their values align with our company ethos. As Dani Suntup (Chief People Officer) said, “Our values are the cornerstone of our identity and the driving force behind our success. Our company culture is not just a set of guidelines; it is a reflection of our shared beliefs, principles, and aspirations that fuel the art of the possible at 11:59. As a growing organization, we understand that fostering a positive and inclusive environment is essential for our growth, innovation, and overall well-being.”  

Taking Inspiration from the Movies: How Do Characters like Elle Woods Bring Their Full Self to Work? 

We added a creative twist to enhance the workshop, exploring the lives of characters like Elle Woods from "Legally Blonde" and Ben Whittaker from "The Intern." These characters demonstrate how authenticity can be a significant asset in professional settings.  They successfully navigate their workplaces by staying true to their unique styles or "brands" while respecting their professional environments' inherent values and needs. This approach is analogous to musicians remixing a song: the lyrics remain constant, but the interpretation varies, adding a distinctly personal touch. 

Take, for example, Elle Woods. You might recall her unique approach to applying for an internship. She presented her resume on pink, scented paper, asking, "Don’t you think it adds a little something?" Indeed, it did. This instance beautifully illustrates how personal flair can complement professional endeavors. Such examples give our team relatable and inspiring ways to see how personal and professional values can be effectively intertwined. And hopefully, they had a little fun with it too! 😊  

Continued Engagement and Application 

The workshop was a starting point, not an endpoint. We held follow-up sessions for teams to explore how to incorporate these values into their roles more deeply, ensuring the workshop’s lessons are applied and sustained.  We'll also be rolling out this workshop a few times a year to ensure new employees are up to speed while providing existing employees with a refresher and an invitation to reassess their own values in the event they've changed. 

Conclusion: A Step Towards a Unified Culture 

The Culture and Values Workshop was a significant stride  towards creating a cohesive, values-driven culture. It marks our commitment to not just rebrand in name but to embody the intentional changes  made (vision, mission, values) in every aspect of our operations. As we move forward, these values will remain central to our identity, guiding us in our decisions and actions and strengthening our position as a company that not only values success, but also integrity, respect, and inclusivity. 

Alexa Davis
Post by Alexa Davis
December 29, 2023
Alexa Davis is the go-to communications person at 11:59. With her background in digital anthropology, she's passionate about understanding how tech and people mesh. Alexa's all about getting curious, asking questions, diving deep into the tech world, and then breaking it down into content that everyone following 11:59 can connect with. Basically, she takes the techy stuff and makes it relatable. Simple as that!