In a previous post we talked about recognition at XL Group. The last post left out some important information on how XL not only creates time for recognition of great work, but how XL recognizes team members who are exemplary of XL Group’s values.

Character ethic and thoughtful work are the foundations of our values at XL. We didn’t write the book on either of this topics, but our philosophy was directly informed by those that did, namely Stephen Covey who wrote  the famous 7 Habits of Highly Effective People and the US Army’s concept of Completed Staff Work. For those that have never heard of these concepts before of for those who need a refresher, below are overviews of each and links to learn more.

The 7 Habits:

  1. Be proactive
  2. Begin with the end in mind
  3. Put first things first
  4. Think Win/Win
  5. Seek first to understand, then to be understood
  6. Synergize
  7. Sharpen the saw

Completed Staff Work (or, as we refer to it, CSW):

“A principle of management which states that subordinates are responsible for submitting written recommendations to superiors in such a manner that the superior need do nothing further in the process than review the submitted document and indicate approval or disapproval.”

 These concepts provide frameworks for us to clearly communicate expectations for our actions both client-facing and internal. As it applies to our recognition, we have a token system based on all of the above. We have 8 tokens, 7 for the 7 Habits and 1 CSW. Team members at XL can nominate each other for tokens during our Friday “Lightning Rounds” (company-wide weekly review meetings). Getting nominated for all 8 tokens means an extra week off for that team member. So, beyond recognizing the upholding of values, we’re also incentivizing our teams to keep them front of mind.

We know we’re not alone out there. There are many, many companies who work hard to ensure their core values are not just marketing speak on their websites. Some use existing frameworks, like the above, and others make attempts at writing their own versions of similar concepts. We’re always interested in new ways to cultivate good habits.  How does your company make sure its values are practiced across the organization?