Decide, Commit, Succeed


Many companies invest time, energy, and resources into defining their core values. They look deep inside their own teams, they talk to customers, they evaluate their business goals.

From this research, thinking, and collective brainstorming emerge a defined set of values. Maybe there are three of them. Maybe five. Hopefully not more than that because who could live up to so many values?

Once established, a company’s core values guide employees. They become signposts and measuring sticks for behavior, strategy, and decision-making. They get used in marketing, taglines, presentations, and on signage. Core values are all over the place!

What I’ve noticed is that many companies have similar values. You often see the same words popping up when companies define their values: integrity, resilience, humility, honesty, accountability, passion, diversity, teamwork, initiative, curiosity . . .

It’s not just big companies that embrace the idea of values; even the mom-and-pop shops get in on it, like this company Paintworx, where I recently had bodywork done on my car. They had a big sign in their shop with these words on it: DECIDE, COMMIT, SUCCEED.

That’s a lot different from the values I see other companies promoting. All the other words listed above—integrity, resilience, etc.— are nouns, and they are static references to states or qualities. Paintworx goes all out on the verbs. They have a plan of action and they’re sticking to it.

They’re not saying who they are, they’re saying how they go about doing things. I like the directness and the confidence in those words. I like the natural progression. You decide the best way to do something, you commit to your plan of action, and the end result is you succeed.

I’m not sure how exactly how DECIDE, COMMIT, SUCCEED applies to autobody work, but I can see how it might apply to me. Maybe I’ve learned something. Maybe I need to come up with three action verbs to define my own core values. What would your three words be?

By David Klein

David Klein

Published novelist, creative writer, journalist, avid reader, discriminating screen watcher.


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