My values - what do I stand for as a human being?

Our values mean a lot to whether we feel that we are satisfied with our lives and whether we have the motivation to participate in the tasks at work that we are part of. If you don't know your values or what is important to you, you can quickly end up in a place where you are not really happy with what you are doing. It can also mean that you have difficulty standing up for yourself and have a feeling that you don't know who you are and what you stand for.

Our values are often unconscious to us. When you are aware of your values, you have the opportunity to act actively and create the working life you want, or at least plan how to get to where you want to be. We have different values in different areas of life, such as health, relationships, housing, and work. Your values change as you change. Just like your motivation  can change over time. When your values are in conflict, it affects you both personally and professionally. Whether you thrive at your job may depend on whether you experience the job values that are most important to you fulfilled.

It is probably not every day that you go to work and think about your values. But maybe you experience situations at work that you don't quite like - without quite knowing why. You can feel that "something" feels wrong. Maybe you know what it is about. Maybe not. It may be connected to the fact that "your values have been stepped on". Think about, for example, whether the company's position on e.g. politics matters to you? Is it important to have a flat organizational structure? What about the degree of freedom and the possibility to organize your working day yourself? For example, is it important for you to have a home workplace?

Value clarification
If you know your values, you can use them as a kind of compass to navigate by. This makes it easier for you to know which direction you are going in your working life and what is most important for you to achieve in your life and everyday life. 

Every decision you make in life is a reflection of what is important to you because your values are based on your beliefs and attitudes. Your values give others an impression of your actions, as your values tell why you do what you do. By becoming aware of your values, you get the opportunity to act actively, create the career you want and plan how to get there. 

When clarifying your values, remember that they must be current. It may well be that there was a special motivation that made you e.g. chose to become a researcher, work with quality assurance in industry or chose to be a pharmacist in a pharmacy. But it could also be that your values have changed.

Value exercise
Start by choosing 8-12 values that are important to you and write them down each on a small piece of paper.

You then sort the values. First you choose the 6-7 most important ones. Then you remove 2-3 which are not the most important. Once you have done that, put the 3-5 values you have chosen in order from most to least important.

Look at the list you made. Does it look right to you? Remember that there are no right values or order other than what you think suits you. You are very welcome to change both the order and the values on your list if it doesn't feel right.

Finally, look at your list and try to ask yourself the following questions:

  • What does the value mean to you?
  • Why are the chosen values important? 
  • Do you live according to your values? 
  • What is needed for you to live according to your values (to a greater extent)? 
  • What stands in the way of you being able to live according to your values? 

With your values in your rucksack – towards the future
It can be difficult to prioritise between values that are each valuable to you. Values change over time, and it is important that your work values are in balance with your values in your private life. Fortunately, the modern labour market gives us a good opportunity to divide our careers into quite different chapters. The most difficult thing is actually being allowed to do the same thing, in the same place, in the same way throughout your working life.

When you are aware of what is important to you, you must think about what must absolutely be present in your job. If you come to the conclusion that there is too much of a mismatch between your values and the job you are in, you do not necessarily need to change company or organisation. There may be positions at your current workplace that are worth searching for – and a shortcut to your future desired job. There are good benefits to trying to develop from your current position.

Once you know what your job must contain as a minimum to match your job values, the next step is to examine the values of your current employer or perhaps future employer. Many companies have written down a basic set of values that they want both employees and management to work on.

If you are going to a job interview, a good piece of advice for the job interview is to ask what the company means by these values and how they are lived out in everyday life. Also ask about the culture in the company, as this expresses the values that are actually lived out.

Use your list of values when you need to reflect on your future working life. Get ready for what gives you energy at work by, for example, supplementing your train of thought with the following questions:

  • What role do you have in the future?
  • What does your next job look like?
  • What really makes sense to you?
  • What context do you belong to?

Need for sparring on values?
If you need sparring on your thoughts about your basic values and how they come into play in your current workplace or in your future job, contact the career guidance at Pharmadanmark and let's examine the importance in your working life together 

Contact the career guidance in Pharmadanmark
Phone: 3946 3630