List of Personal Values Definitions and Personal Values Questionnaire

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List of Personal Values and Questionnaire

This questionnaire and the resulting list of personal values is the result of research from thousands of job seekers. Having your values being met at work will make you happier in your job. Being happy to go to work and feeling fulfilled at work is what you want, right?

List of Personal Values: What’s Wrong with Using Existing Materials?

Whilst there are sites that simply provide a long list of personal values, most of these are relatively meaningless to job candidates for three reasons:

  1. Some simply provide a long list of words. We have seen up to 400. The trouble is that there are often repeats of the same value but using a different word.
  2. They rarely show a definition. What a value means to one person can be very different to the next person.
  3. There are very few that have a purpose. Sure, they can be associated to strengths and weaknesses, but there are generally better ways of understanding those. They rarely focus on the job candidate.

Why is Candidate Tips List of Values so Much Better for the Job Seeker?

Instead, on this site and for the list of personal values you will find below, these are aimed at the job seeker in three ways:

  1. Out list of personal values is based on research and the most common values that occur in the general population.
  2. To understand the environment that will make you most happy and fulfilled.
  3. Most importantly, to provide you with questions to ask at interview to find out if the job will suit you.

Although we have provided all the values and their environment definitions below, you will need to complete the questionnaire below that to get the interview questions.

Personal Values Questionnaire

Welcome to your List of Personal Values Questionnaire.

This questionnaire works on the bases of you supplying honest answers to the questions. Please make sure that you spread your scores well so that no more than one-third of the questions get a "Very Important" response. This will enable you to differentiate your actual critical personal values from the rest. Also try to give off-the-cuff first response answers rather than high considered responses.

For you as an individual at work, how important is...

NameEmail
1) ...Ensuring a good work/life balance and not being constrained in this by the requirements of the role?
2) ...Appreciation of your work by others?
3) ...The job has good working conditions?
4) ...A role that requires you to have constant interactions with other people?
5) ...Prefer to work with people rather than with things?
6) ...Creativity at work?
7) ...Can use your specialist knowledge and expertise?
8) ...Challenge in the job role?
9) ...Ability to take decisions and take risks?
10) ...Being told "well done" when it is deserved?
11) ...Having the latitude to find new ways for doing things?
12) ...A job where you know what you have to do each day, and have done it before?
13) ...Where your working pattern is up to you as long as you fulfil your objectives?
14) ...Where you are seen as an expert and respected as such?
15) ...The organisation has strong ties to the local community, 'good causes' and charities?
16) ...A role that enables you to work in relative isolation from others?
17) ...Where people rely heavily on your outputs for them to do their own jobs?
18) ...Being Healthy?
19) ...where you feel you might have a 'job for life'?
20) ...The work is highly interesting?
21) ...Where every day is different, and you are never certain what you will be doing next?
22) ...Being able to take risks and get things wrong from time-to-time?
23) ...Prefer to work with things rather than with people?
24) ...Having the time and resources to create the highest quality outputs?
25) ...Knowing what is happening across the business, including outside of your work area?
26) ...Where you can make decisions and have the ownership of those decisions even if they were wrong?
27) ...Doing a high quality job?
28) ...There is time freedom and/or flexible working?
29) ...The pattern of work is predictable?
30) ...Having the ability to maintain a healthy lifestyle?
31) ...A fast pace environment at work?
32) ...A high pace where there is rarely time to catch breath?
33) ...You are developed continually?
34) ...Your skills and knowledge are continually and consciously updated by the organisation?
35) ...Where there are clear career paths and the organisation tends to recruit to vacancies internally rather than externally?
36) ...The organisation gives back to society?
37) ...The job environment is invested in heavily to provide staff with the right conditions to work in?
38) ...The job is highly pressured?
39) ...you feel secure in your role?
40) ...Family and personal relationships outside of work?
41) ...Where the work sets its own intellectual and enjoyable challenge on a continual basis?
42) ...You can see how you could earn far more and that route feels accessible to you?
43) ...Being personally challenged to succeed in every aspect of the role?
44) ...The job has high remuneration?
45) ...Promotion within the business?
46) ...A feeling of 'being in on things' at work?
47) ...A wide variety or tasks and projects?
48) ...There is a high degree of independence and autonomy in the role?

Be sure to click Submit Personal Values Questionnaire to see your results!



 

List of Personal Values Together with Best Working Environments

The following list of personal values shows definitions for each value in terms of the best types of working environments. Simply click on the value to reveal the environment. Please remember, like all these types of ‘tests’ and questionnaires, we can only provide broad indicators. In practical terms this means that whilst most of the definition might be right, there may be the odd sentence you firmly disagree with. If that is the case, then you are correct, so ignore that particular sentence or part of a sentence.

To help organise the outcomes of your Personal Values Inventory, we have prepared a worksheet to use in combination with resources below. Simply complete the form below, and you can then download this resource. This will simultaneously register you with Candidate Tips for future articles and tips on finding the right career for you.

Please provide your name and email address for your free download.

List of Personal Values and Definitions: Appreciation of Work
Environmental Needs

Where you have a boss who provides continual feedback (positive and negative) on your performance without being asked. Probably in an environment that fosters an ‘open door’ policy. Where there are formal and informal methods to find out how well you are doing in your role. For example, appraisal which is enacted rather than just paid lip service, mentoring and coaching schemes, 360-degree feedback systems, and so on.

Questions to Ask at Interview
  • “How will I know when I am doing a good job?”
  • “What processes exist within the department/ function/business to tell me about my performance?”
List of Personal Values and Definitions: Being Healthy
Environmental Needs

Does the business/department or function have sports facilities? Do they have concessions/discounts for other local facilities? This will help you decide their ethos. Health often requires consistent activity. If you have control of your working day, then you can dictate the time you put aside for healthy pursuits. It may be more difficult if the job dictates irregularity of working hours. Also consider the more practical aspects of your environment. What’s the air quality like? How much commuting is there and by what means? What disruption to sleep patterns are likely?

Questions to Ask at Interview
  • “What does the business do to encourage the physical well-being of its staff?”
  • “I enjoy sport [or whatever] and believe it aids my performance at work. What are your beliefs about the interaction between work and physical activity?”
  • Also ask about the typical working day and working cycles such as in many accountancy-based roles.
List of Personal Values and Definitions: Challenge in the Job Role
Environmental Needs

Where the organisation is open to you taking things forward rather than maintaining a steady ship. Where the majority of problems that occur have no easily accessible and pre-defined solution.

Questions to Ask at Interview
  • “What do you think needs taking forward in this dept./function/business, and how can I help you achieve this?” (How much does the boss want to rock the boat? Is she/he just seeing things out until retirement?)
List of Personal Values and Definitions: Creativity at Work
Environmental Needs

By its very nature creativity requires some degree of latitude in the roles remit, the organisational processes, and flexibility from the boss. Whilst there may be an end goal or objective, with the exception of a few processes and systems, creativity comes from how you achieve the goal. Therefore, creative individuals are also often quite rebellious and need room away from present constraints in order to be creative. An over-controlling or dominant boss will often naturally get in the way of this process. In other words, you need some independence and tools to deliver.

Questions to Ask at interview
  • “In your view [potential boss], what needs improving within the remit of the role, and how can I help make those improvements?”
  • “How does the business/function/department monitor performance?” (You want to know if they will continually ‘track’ you or measure performance against a few key milestones and the objectives – your preference).
  • “Within the role, what are the ‘givens’ as to how I should achieve my remit?” Or, “What processes and systems will I need to follow towards achieving my remit and objectives?”
List of Personal Values and Definitions: Decision-Making and Risk-Taking
Environmental Needs

These are not just the ‘big’ decisions. It’s about ‘control’ and being in control. Similar to independence and autonomy below. However, risk-taking implies much more. Risk-taking is going to have to be the norm in this environment. Unlikely to be an accountancy-led business. More likely sales and marketing-led. Alternatively, there are roles within ‘steady’ organisations that exist to create some turbulence where it is most needed. Check you have a senior ‘sponsor’ in these situations or you could get ‘hung-out to dry’. For other roles these values are the norm – where the member of staff has to make the decision (with risk) because no two problems are the same. Think about what your boss will need to be like – protecting of you for when a risk you took back-fires. You will also need them to be quite distant so they are not taking the decisions for you.

Questions to Ask at Interview

Also see independence & autonomy below

  • “Who will be particularly interested in both the outputs of the role and the style in which it is carried out?”
  • “How would you describe the culture of the business?” Or, “How would you describe the accepted style of management within the department/ function or business?”
  • “To perform at the highest standards in this role, what sort of decision-making will I be responsible for?”
List of Personal Values and Definitions: Doing a High Quality Job
Environmental Needs

Where quality is more important than throughput. The products or services are usually sold at a premium that provides resources for assuring quality. In the role, all the systems, tools for the job and other resources will be available to ensure the highest quality.

Questions to Ask at Interview
  • “How does the quality ethos reflect itself within the department/function or business?”
  • “How do you measure individual performance?” (You are looking for qualitative rather than purely quantitative indicators).
List of Personal Values and Definitions: Family and/or Personal Friendships
Environmental Needs

Where there is time flexibility in your job role. Where your customer is not reliant on you being at work for certain hours of the day. Where your boss understands flexibility and has trust in you fulfilling your role out of traditional hours.

Questions to Ask at Interview
  • “I always like to go the extra mile in my job. What sort of flexibility will there be in my working hours to enable me to do that?” (This effectively turns a negative question into a positive one. If you just ask about flexibility, the interviewer may think that your commitments outside work will be detrimental to the work itself)
  • “What does this dept./function/business do to ensure a healthy work/home balance?”
List of Personal Values and Definitions: Fast Pace at Work
Environmental Needs

Where there are continual deadlines to be met. Where the 80/20 rule applies rather than a total quality ethos. Production and performance indicators are likely to be more quantitative than qualitative.

Questions to Ask at Interview
  • “What sort of deadlines will I need to meet to ensure success on a daily and weekly basis?”
  • “How do you measure individual performance?” (You are looking for quantitative rather than qualitative indicators).
List of Personal Values and Definitions: Feeling of ‘being in on Things’
Environmental Needs

There are two main aspects to this value. The first involves the boss and their willingness to pass on information to you that may not even have an impact on your role. They are likely to hold regular team briefings as well as one-to-one coaching sessions. The second is the ethos in the function/ department or business. How is information promulgated? Is there an in-house magazine? A formal team brief? Communication cells? How is the intranet used? Are there formal and informal networking sessions? You are looking for an environment where the sharing of information is encouraged.

Questions to Ask at Interview
  • “Describe the culture of the business.”
  • “How does the business disseminate information?”
  • “How does the business decide what I will need to know in order to carry out my role?”
  • “Apart from formal training, how will I be developed in my role?” (You want them to talk about coaching, and so on) the department/function or business as if it was a person.”
  • “How do staff interact outside of working hours?”
  • “What does the business do to encourage a shared culture?”
List of Personal Values and Definitions: Giving Back to Society
Environmental Needs

Where the organisation works with the local community. Where the organisation is ethical with its product supply chain, or sponsors groups that provide good to others or the environment. Where the organisation/boss allows you flexible time to undertake out-of-work activities.

Questions to Ask at interview

See family/friendships above.

  • “What sort of partnership does this business have with the local community?”
  • “What does the business do to encourage a positive view of this organisation in the local community?”
List of Personal Values and Definitions: Good Working Conditions
Environmental Needs

Very much in the eye of the beholder – your personal preferences. Good working conditions are usually associated with ‘cash rich’ businesses (and functions/departments) or where the intellectual capital of staff is high. They can also be associated with the culture of the business – what’s important to them.

Questions to Ask at Interview
  • “Would it be possible to show the working area for this role before I leave today?”
  • Just use your eyes as you go through the business. Reception areas will give you some clues.
List of Personal Values and Definitions: High Pressure Role
Environmental Needs

Where your personal actions and the timing of those actions are critical to others. Where failure to deliver has repercussions elsewhere and which affect profit or cost to the business.

Questions to Ask at Interview
  • “By my delivering this role to the best it can be done, what cost saving or profit generation will it assure the business?”
  • “In the internal supply chain, where does this role sit?”
  • “What are the typical peaks and troughs in the activity levels required by this role?”
List of Personal Values and Definitions: High Remuneration
Environmental Needs

A number of routes:

  1. Long-term – high contribution pension funds on the part of the employer. Stock/share options granted.
  2. Performance-based – performance related pay/bonus is a high component of the reward package.
  3. Linked to promotion – where there are a number of career paths and the paths themselves are wide. In other words, where the business/boss encourages a number of potential career routes from each role and each/most of those routes have a number of job roles in the path (not ‘dead man’s shoes’).
  4. ‘Cash rich’ business that pays above average salaries for the functional role.
Questions to Ask at interview
  • “What is the make-up of the package for this role?”
  • “When I have succeeded in this role, what further opportunities are there for me within the business?” “Can you give me some examples of individuals’ who have achieved those career paths from roles similar to this?” (Is it lip service or are the career paths and promotion opportunities real?)
List of Personal Values and Definitions: Independence and Autonomy
Environmental Needs

A distant boss where who prefers an ‘open door’ policy rather than a strict daily reporting regime. Where your objectives are ‘bottom-line’ stating the tasks to achieve rather than the process to be followed in achieving them.

Questions to Ask at Interview
  • “What sort of reporting relationship do you prefer?” (You really want to know how much they will be looking over your shoulder and making decisions for you)
  • “How will I know what I need to do in the role to be successful?” (What you really want to know is how your performance will be measured – by bottom-line targets or in how you complete your targets?)
List of Personal Values and Definitions: interesting Work
Environmental Needs

Often one of the top values in the IT and engineering sectors. What interesting means is again very much an individual definition. It is, however, likely to involve a mixture of challenge and variety. Depth of analysis may be another part to what ‘interesting’ means.

Questions to Ask at Interview

See questions in the sections on Challenge and Variety. One key question could be:

  • “Could you give me some real examples of the sorts of activities I will get involved in?”
  • “What’s an average day like?”
List of Personal Values and Definitions: personal Development
Environmental Needs

Where the business takes personal development plans seriously. Where they are structured and enacted. Where the business encourages the sharing of knowledge and this is positively rewarded. Be warned, this type of value is often only saved for a small percentage of senior staff that have been identified as ‘talent’ or ‘high potential’ and are on succession lists. This area can be particularly important to specialists and technical staff where continual update of knowledge is vital.

Questions to Ask at interview
  • “What would my personal development plan be for the first six months [or whatever]?” (If the answer comes easily you know they take learning seriously).
  • “How are individuals’ within the business encouraged to share knowledge?”
  • “On what basis will my development plan be designed?” (Just on current role requirements, future role requirements, personal desires, on the basis of competencies, and so on).
List of Personal Values and Definitions: Predictability of the Job Role
Environmental Needs

Knowing what the day holds for you before you get there. Knowing the activities you will undertake because you have done them before and are practiced in them. The role will be repetitive (though not necessarily low skilled or low intelligence requirement). The role may have boundaries defined by legislation or internal processes. This provides predictability.

Questions to Ask at Interview
  • “What’s the average working day?”
  • “How will I know what I need to complete each day?”
  • “What are the most important aspects to this role?” (You want them to say that it follows a pre-defined process no matter the complexity)
List of Personal Values and Definitions: Promotion in the Organisation
Environmental Needs

Where the business/boss encourages internal fertilisation rather than bringing in from outside as a matter of course. Where there are a number of career paths and the paths themselves are wide. In other words, where the business/boss encourages a number of potential career routes from each role and each/most of those routes have a number of job roles in the path (not ‘dead man’s shoes’). The market today is far more fluid than in the past. Be warned that it is often easier to get a job externally than internally in the business.

Questions to Ask at Interview
  • “When I have succeeded in this role, what further opportunities are there for me within the business?” “Can you give me some examples of individuals’ who have achieved those career paths from roles similar to this?” (Is it lip service or are the career paths and promotion opportunities real?)
List of Personal Values and Definitions: Security of the Organisation and of the Job Role
Environmental Needs

Operational security – where there is steady growth (rather than quick expansion or reduction);

Job security – where you are a perceived expert with many groups (internal or external) requesting knowledge, product or service from you. The more groups and the more variety in requests, the more the secure the role. You are not easy to replace with software or in being integrated into other roles.

Questions to Ask at Interview
  • Operational security – “What are the growth plans for the business over the next three years?” “How does this role contribute to the growth?”
  • Job security – See Specialist of Expertise below.
List of Personal Values and Definitions: Specialist or Expertise at Work
Environmental Needs

Where groups of people depend on your knowledge or skill. The more groups, then the more perceived expertise. Where your work is based on depth and detail rather than breadth and overview. Expertise can be in any field. This group often become consultants due to changes in core and periphery working patterns. Those within organisations can become the font of all knowledge in their particular specialism or sub-specialism. This will also help with job security in these circumstances (until it is decided to use consultants or partner with another business for these services.

Questions to Ask at Interview
  • “For me to be successful in the role, what groups of people will I need to receive and supply information/product/services to and on what sort of frequency?” (Remember, the more groups and the greater the required variety, the more perceived expertise)
  • “What sort of variety will there be in the requests made of me by others?”
List of Personal Values and Definitions: Time Freedom
Environmental Needs

How much can you control your diary? How much is already dictated by other peoples needs? The role is unlikely to be dependant on when your customers need you. You may also not be working on pre-scheduled cycles as, for example, with the legislative requirements of many finance departments. You have objectives with rough time-frames but when each segment of your role is completed is largely up to you.

Questions to Ask at Interview
  • “How does the business/function/department monitor performance?” (You want to know if they will continually ‘track’ you or measure performance against a few key milestones and the objectives – your preference).
  • “Within the role, what are the requirements as to how I should achieve my remit?” Or, “What processes and systems will I need to follow towards achieving my remit and objectives?”
  • “I always like to go the extra mile in my job. What sort of flexibility will there be in my working hours to enable me to do that?” (This effectively turns a negative question into a positive one).
List of Personal Values and Definitions: Variety at Work
Environmental Requirements

Where the job description is no more than a broad outline. Where something different happens every day. Where there are no obvious sequences or processes to follow for every eventuality. Where you could become part of the ‘core’ workforce that is sent to whatever needs doing. Where you are regarded as a central part of the ‘talent pool’.

Questions to Ask at Interview
  • “So I can get feel for how I would best contribute, could you take me through an average day in this role.”
  • (If the interviewer has difficulty in defining the daily activities, then the chances are that there is variety. If they can list the activities of the role in sequence, then the chances are that there is less variety)
List of Personal Values and Definitions: Working with ‘Thinks’
Environmental Needs

For the role it is not predominantly necessary to apply interpersonal skills to complete tasks. However, it may well require great analytical, deductive, or reasoning skills. You prefer working with things (equipment, PC, tools, accounts, or whatever). You may also prefer working on your own to achieve a task through to completion. A mind that requires to know ‘how things work’ rather than simply ‘what they do’. Probably require a role that is quite detailed and requires probing and investigation.

Questions to Ask at Interview
  • “What are the important facets for this role?”
  • “Describe the main skills required to complete this role effectively”
  • “Who will I need to work with on a daily basis to complete this role effectively?” (You want them to have to think hard rather than groups of names rolling out naturally from their mouth)
List of Personal Values and Definitions: Working with People
Environmental Needs

Where by the very nature of your job description you must interact with others. Where the success of your role depends on others fulfilling their roles. Where other people rely on you – you are part of an internal supply chain and/or team.

Questions to Ask at Interview
  • “I always look to be successful in my roles. To be successful in this role, who will I need to make contact with on a daily/weekly basis?”

Now that you have established your personal values, it is worth moving onto understanding the right culture for you. Finding the right culture will significantly increase your chances of happiness in the role. You can begin the Culture Fit questionnaire here.

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