See beyond rules to do what’s right

Our decisions, actions and behaviours should be led by clear principles and beliefs, particularly in times of significant change. Rules and laws provide boundaries but can never be sufficient of themselves and can lead to unintended outcomes.

That’s why we’ve defined three key principles as the pathway to good decisions, regardless of the context in which those decisions are being made.

1. Work matters

  • Work can and should be a force for good – for organisations, workers and the communities, societies and economies they’re part of.
  • Good work is purposeful. It's designed to help everyone use their skills and talents effectively and find personal meaning in the work they do.
  • Good work is safe and inclusive. It recognises contribution in a fair manner and values human connection.
  • Good work exists for the long-term benefit of individuals, organisations and society, balancing economic sustainability with social accountability.

2. People matter

  • People are fundamental to businesses and organisations; they are unique and worthy of care, understanding and investment.
  • People should have access and opportunity to work, and be provided with the support, development and resources to be effective; in turn, individuals have a personal responsibility for their work, development and behaviour.
  • People deserve to be treated fairly and have a meaningful voice on matters that affect them, in addition to their rights and protection under law.

3. Professionalism matters

For the people profession this means:

  • we are all ambassadors for the people profession, acting with integrity and championing better work and working lives in all we do
  • we are committed to continual development and to making values-based decisions
  • we are experts on people, work and change, and use our understanding of how business creates value to balance the risks and opportunities inherent in any organisation
  • we understand the implications of our decisions beyond the interests of our own organisations, for the good of wider society.

So how did we get here?

The values at the centre of The People Profession: now and for the future (principles-ledevidence-basedoutcomes-driven) arose from academic research into the lenses we use to make decisions, while also incorporating feedback from across the profession. Explore the key research underpinning The People Profession: now and for the future by downloading the reports below.

Next: Evidence-based

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