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“Core values” are the driving motivators that cause the members of an organization to want to accomplish the mission and vision of the organization and provide the motivation to work hard to perform the strategy of the organization. They answer the question “Why do we do what we do as a faith community?” They determine ministry distinctives, communicate to prospective and engaged members what is important to the organization, enhance credible leadership, shape ministry character, contribute to ministry success, and affect strategic planning. Core values bring the dedication of constancy and the emotion of passion to accomplishing the mission, vision, and strategy of the organization, inspiring people to act.
Core values are separate from the mission, vision, and strategy of an organization, and they are the foundation upon which these other important aspects of an organization rest. The “mission” or “mission statement” offers an answer to the question: “What does this organization hope to achieve?” The “vision” of an organization is a description of the outcomes an organization hopes to achieve in the future, articulating the major goals and ambitions of the organization. The “strategy” of an organization is how the organization plans to accomplish both the mission and the vision.
Does your church or ministry organization have specific, written core values? If so, what are they? How do you communicate them to your leaders and members? If you shared those core values from the pulpit or in a newsletter and then asked your group what that list was, would they be able to identify it as your community’s motivation to accomplish the mission that God has entrusted to your community?