Introducing our new AFG Values

A blog by our Director for HR, Kirsty Muldoon …


Personal Values play a significant part in the way we live our lives. Our personal values are often influenced by the behaviours or manners impressed upon us as children; it can inform the friendships and relationships we choose as we reach adulthood; it might define the career choices we make – for example, working for an organisation such as Alternative Futures Group (AFG).

Organisational Values are not descriptions of the work we do or the strategies we employ to accomplish our mission, they are the unseen drivers of our behaviour, based on our deeply held beliefs, these drive what we do.

Organisational values drive the way we influence, how we interact with each other, and how we work together.

Although they are described as organisational values, it’s the behaviours of the people which are the living expression of the values. These behaviours, or collection of habits, are what influence an organisation’s culture – “the way we do things round here”

A healthy culture

It is  our ambition to have a “healthy and engaged culture” at AFG and to become “an employer of choice”

This ambition of creating a “healthy and engaged culture” lies at the core of the AFG brand, the essence of its identity, and must be fulfilled by our people. Those people who actively fulfil that brand promise by embracing and living out the organisational values, are our true brand ambassadors.

Most organisations have identified values but for many, they are restricted to wall plaques and induction handbooks, far from the hearts of people who work there.

We believe it is critical to ensure that our organisational values are clearly understood, owned and demonstrated by everyone in the organisation.

As a registered charity and public service provider supporting potentially vulnerable adults, it’s critical we display values reflective who we are and what we do.

During a year in which we celebrate our 25th anniversary we have developed a new set of Values consistent with where AFG is, and where we want to be. We’re  focused on the next 25 ahead with our new Business Plans laying the path ahead. Therefore, the time is right to update and refresh our Values.

Now, more than ever, our competitive advantage starts with an aligned culture driving the organisation’s purpose through the shared vision of our people.

What we’ve done

We’ve collaborated with consultancy The Fresh Perspective on this important work. Andrew Stirrup, a renowned motivational speaker, has helped facilitate a number of ‘Listening Sessions’. Our people were able to come along and be frank and open. To say: ‘This is what AFG means to me’, as well as ‘this is what we do well and this is what we don’t do so well’.

It’s been essential that colleagues from across all our Regions, Teams and Departments have had the chance to input into these sessions. The results have been fed back to the Executive Management Team and I can personally say they have been incredibly insightful to read and absorb.

Inspiring and passionate, sometimes challenging and critical too. Being able to hold a mirror up to AFG, to question what works well and what can be changed, is vital to helping us move forwards. We have read and listened and fed back our own thoughts to get to the position of creating a refreshed Mission, Vision and Value Statements.

Introducing our new values

–     We are one

We succeed together with a shared purpose and vision. We inspire others, take pride in what we do and trust each other. We all have a part to play.

–     Every person matters

We are people focused and value skills, gifts and potential.

We listen. How people think and feel matters; everyone has a voice.

–     We make a positive difference

We change lives. Our ‘can do’ attitude and passion enables people to be the best they can be.

–     We raise the bar

We learn from the past, are adaptive and excited by our future. We innovate and lead the way. We strive for best quality with least waste. Better never stops.

–     We take ownership

We do the right thing, are solution focused and get results. We are responsible for our behaviour and hold each other to account.

Pride in what we do

I’m incredibly proud that these values have been developed by the people within AFG, I believe they clearly articulate what we value and how we do things round here.

The Values will act as our organisational compass. Everybody in the organisation – including ourselves in the Executive Team – will need to demonstrate these Values everyday and in everything we do

We hope you’ll all warmly welcome our new, exciting and refreshed AFG compass.