Values First

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Dear Linda, I seem to be in conflict both at home and at work and wanted to get your advice on how to build better alignment with my spouse and family and with my team and management. I’m not sure they are related, but Ill bring them both up because I’m experiencing similar incidence at home and at work.
My husband and I have two children, and are having some small quarrels about vacation choices and limits and consequences around the kids and their behavior choices – nothing serious, but always these little annoying conversations. The same is true at work where I’m a product manager. there are conversations about features, timelines, deliverables, budgets, you name it! It’s so overwhelming when both and life are a handful and there’s no reprieve. Is it a coincidence? do you have any recommendations?
She Who Is Overwhelmed

Dear She, I offer my sympathies as its difficult to keep it together when its coming at you from all sides! i recommend having a priorities and values conversation with your spouse and with your peers and executive management team. Find that alignment that brought you together, the shared values that will keep you together and work together to make it easier to make choices in alignment with these priorities and values. Here are some top ten ways how you can leverage to get there.
1. Know your whole core values and how they have expressed themselves in your personal and professional life. Notice when they have caused friction in either and see if the current pattern is another example of such.
2. Have a values conversation . . .
3. We believe that how you do one thing is how you do everything, so values-based conversations at home and at work will be similar.
4. If you can find little alignment, get help and give yourself space to air out feelings which might be causing a gulf in your relationship.
5. Work together to address this gulf, or decide together to agree to disagree, or not to bother bridging the chasm, and plan accordingly.
6. You don’t have to be in full alignment on all values, or even all important values. Decide to stay together and agree to disagree where it makes sense, and be sensitive to day-to-day activities which might circle around this area of sensitivity 6. Engage all parties in the priorities and values conversations and enlist them to sign on to how they can support a joint effort to improve collaboration and results. This is the same at home and at work, but the players are different!
7. If you find that you have compromised or are compromising your values too much, make sure this is the case and find the data, the facts about how actions and decisions are making you uncomfortable and work with others at home and work to make changes to better align with your own values.
8. When making a spouse decision, or hiring decision, it’s so important to have that values discussion up front. Even if it didn’t happen during the honeymoon period, it’s not too late to open up the discussion, even if things are going well. And especially if there is a new, big project (or family addition) planned!
9. You will be happiest within a family and within a company if you share values. As a parent or leader, you also have the responsibility to teach, train, reward, educate on values-based choices and decisions. Focusing on the smaller decisions and actions will help ensure that the bigger decisions head in a similar path in alignment with values.
10. Celebrate your victories, and appreciate that its a journey and will not remain fixed, but will keep changing and evolving, hopefully for the better This is a thorny issue, and not easily addressed, but we hope that the advice above from the people we’ve worked with will help bring clarity for you.
Best of luck,
Linda

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