Summary: Founder, Alex Tuck, refelects on how he and his team revamped the company’s values to simplify them and clearly define what attributes were going to help them have the greatest positive impact.
Our Values Challenge
Like most folks, I like to spend the last week of the year thinking back on how things went and what I’d like to see changed. At Tuck, we shut down for the last week of the year to allow us to recharge, reflect, and do a bit of dreaming about what we will focus on in the coming year.
I was proud of what we achieved in twelve months. Our focus was on operational excellence. We invested in the upgrade of tools — most impactful being ClickUp Enterprise and HubSpot Marketing and Sales Pro. We automated most of our operations systems, integrating all of our tools together. We wrote things down. Frankly, we got to the size where it was time to do in our own firm what we help our bigger clients implement.
I was also proud of the work that we were helping our clients achieve. Diathrive Health was helping 300% more people living with diabetes manage and reduce the impact it was having on their lives. We helped the Center for Creative Leadership optimize their service delivery within their Societal Advancement group. And we helped many other social enterprises harness the power of ClickUp (Development Bank of Jamaica, Partnership Project, Envision, United Way of Greater Knoxville, and Futuro Health to name a few).
While we were having a positive impact and living out what I believed were the values we put on our website and in our materials, I honestly couldn’t rattle off what those values were — at least not all of them. When we got back into the virtual office in January, asked some team members to name them, they fumbled, named a few, but struggled like me to name all six.
What this exercise taught me was that our company was values-driven, and people generally got it (myself included), but our values scope was too complex. That’s why we went through a revamp to simplify our values, and our #1 focus for the year is going to be on driving Tuck Consulting Group based on our values. In fact, our highest priority OKR for this quarter is “Establish Tuck as a Values-Driven Organization.”
The New Tuck Values
At Tuck, our new, single, primary objective is to have a Net Positive Impact on everything that we touch. The term Net Positive was coined in the context of business operating principals by Paul Polman and Andrew Winston in their 2021 book, Net Positive: How Courageous Companies Thrive by Giving More than They Take. Their general premise is that companies that focus on having a net positive impact don’t succeed in spite of doing the right things. They succeed BECAUSE they are doing the right things.
After two weeks of deliberation, wordsmithing, and real reflection, our leadership team landed on three values that define who we are as a values-driven company that is having a net positive impact:
1. Servant Leadership: We exist to help others succeed – clients furthering their missions, professionals seeking meaningful work, and communities becoming stronger.
2. Integrity: We hire honest, transparent, and dependable team members, and we look for clients and vendors that do the same.
3. Growth: We are a team of life-long learners with a desire to gain new knowledge from others, especially those with different ideas, beliefs, and life experiences.
If you’ve gone through a recent values transformation or want to compare notes on how to lead a values-driven organization, I’d love to have a call to share our experience and learn from what you’ve done.
Founder & Managing Principal
Alex Tuck is the founder and managing principal of Tuck Consulting Group, a firm that specializes in project management consulting for small businesses. After several tenures at large and regional management consulting firms, Alex set out to create a firm that was focused on better client outcomes through diverse teams with less focus on profit realization rates. Through the pandemic, the firm has experienced 15x two-year growth, landing it on several lists (#356 Inc. 5000, #12 Inc. NE Regionals, Forbes Next 1000, SBA Emerging Leaders).
In addition to Tuck, Alex has served as a nonprofit board member for several organizations, including a microlending nonprofit he co-founded that operates in Central America. Alex runs his remote-first firm from a farm in Vermont where he lives with his wife and four children. Feel free to reach out to book some time with him.