Any officer that is currently going through the promotion process knows that the Competencies & Values Framework now incorporates 4 work-based values: Transparency, Impartiality, Public Service and Integrity.
In our experience many officers are struggling to think how these directly relate to their role and how they fit into the promotion process. The simple answer is that they are not really any different to the six behavioural competencies, merely just split into a separate category. Exercises that assess Values in your process should therefore be approached in the same way as you would approach a Behavioural based exercise or question. The bselectedpolice 3 Pillars of Success Method (Content, Structure & Delivery) will help you do this.
Let’s look in a little more detail as to why Values are included at all in a competency framework.
Why Include Values?
The underlying principle of why organisations put values or mission statements in place is that when colleagues (both peers and management) buy into the to the same values, it usually leads to a more effective and harmonious workplace, with everyone driving toward the same goals. Just like your force ;).
The principles you were brought up with and believe in, your personal standards and the behaviour you feel is appropriate for work all contribute to workplace values. Therefore having a defined set of values in the organisation, understanding what your own values are and how they compare to the values of others in the workplace can help you avoid conflicts and deliver improved results for both internal and external stakeholders.
Defining Your Own Values
Everyone has a set of values they have learned and adopted over their lifetime. However few people have sat down and defined what they actually are. Why would you? Well, the police promotion process, which as we know now incorporates values, forces you to think of them, and have examples of where you have successfully demonstrated them, if you are to pass the process.
So straightaway, here is a task that you need to do: Take a few minutes to write down what your values are, especially those that shape your career. Once you have done this, prioritise the list into what you believe to be the most important five or six. If you share your list of important values with others at work, you will usually find that most agree on their importance and, even though you may be calling them slightly different names from their titles, it’s likely that your list overlaps with the four called out within the CVF.
So what they are asking for you to demonstrate at your board is not really too far removed from what you actually do or believe in.
Your second task now is to now think of suitable, rank appropriate, work examples where you demonstrated these values.
Embedding The Values
A well designed promotion process is not just about what you have done in the past and whether you are capable in your current role, but is trying to assess whether officers are capable of being the leaders of the future. Embedding core competencies (whether values or behaviour based) is key to this.
As a leader in your force (whether you currently are or you aspire to be), if you expect your team to buy into a specific list of values in the workplace, you not only need to work with these values in mind yourself, you need to also specify what they are and communicate these values often.
Many forces will list their core values in a corporate mission statement, often laminated and posted on walls in the station, but, if you don’t speak about these values using real examples, such as what to do when an officer faces an ethical problem, they are unlikely to sink into the working environment and become the normal way of working.
As we say, a competency framework is not something that should be taken down and dusted off just at promotion time, but is something that underpins what you do and how you behave everyday. If it isn’t, ask your self why not.
With the above in mind, here are a couple of Values Based Questions that you may wish to consider in your preparation. Remember, these questions are to just help you start thinking of suitable examples. It unlikely you will face an identical question at your board.
Values Based Questions
• Give me an example of a time when you were particularly perceptive regarding a team members feelings and needs?
• Please talk about a difficult ethical dilemma you faced in a previous role and explain how you resolved the issue.
You will find more Values and Behavioural based questions on our Online Learning Programme which you can purchase here.