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BULLET #6
VALUES CLARIFICATION

Values clarification exercises are useful decision-making tools. They can identify competing factors which are important to you, weigh alternatives, and help make the best decision for your situation.

The exercises presented here are for someone deciding among job offers, job candidates, and vendors. However, the technique can be applied to almost any issue for which you've identified some real alternatives.

Note that these types of exercises are highly situational. They help clarify what's important to you, the decision maker, at a particular point in time. The results can change for different circumstances and different time frames.

The first example looks at how different job options stack up to your "ideal" job. Here's how you do it:

1. List any and all characteristics of a job which are important or interesting to you. List as many as you can think of; nothing is too trivial here.

2. Then assign a weighting of (H)igh, (M)edium, or (L)ow to each characteristic. Ideally, you should end up with a third of the characteristics falling into each weighting. You need to ask yourself if something is really critical to your job satisfaction before assigning it a "High". The "nice-to-have" items should get a "Low".

3. Now rate on a 1-5 scale, where 1 is low and 5 is high, how well your ideal job, current job, and your other job options fulfill the characteristics. Obviously, the ideal job rates a "5" on all characteristics. Now multiply the 1-5 ratings by the H, L, M weightings, where 3 = High, 2 = Medium, and 1 = Low.

4. Finally, sum up the weighted scores and compare results. If the totals are close, you have a tough decision to make. However, if there's a 10% spread, then the higher total is probably the best decision for you.

The first of the attached examples show how the completed exercise looks. The results of exercise #1 show that the current job better meets the characteristics desired in the ideal job. For a copy of the spreadsheet used in each exercise, please sign our Guestbook and request the Values Clarification template.




VALUES CLARIFICATION EXERCISE #1
JOB ALTERNATIVES
(1 -5 Rating Scale, 5 = High)

A
B
C
D
E
F
G
H
I
Characteristics of ideal job
Wgting:
H=3, M=2, L=1
Ideal
Job
Wgted
(A*B)
Current
Job
Wgted
(A*D)
New
Job#1
Wgted
(A*F)
New
Job#1
Wgted
(A*H)
1
High Client interface
3
x
5
15
5
15
1
3
4
12
2
Fun Factor
3
x
5
15
3
9
2
6
1
3
3
Higher salary
3
x
5
15
5
15
5
15
5
15
4
In software industry
3
x
5
15
5
15
5
15
5
15
5
Leverages tech. skills
3
x
5
15
3
9
3
9
3
9
6
People management opportunity
3
x
5
15
5
15
5
15
5
15
7
Maximum variety
2
x
5
10
5
10
2
4
3
6
8
Equity potential
2
x
5
10
5
10
3
6
1
2
9
Leadership potential
2
x
5
10
5
10
4
8
4
8
10
Leverages business knowledge
2
x
5
10
5
10
5
10
4
8
11
Low commute
2
x
5
10
3
6
3
6
1
2
12
Teaching potential
2
x
5
10
3
6
3
6
3
6
13
Good benefits
1
x
5
5
4
4
5
5
4
4
14
Good perks
1
x
5
5
4
4
5
5
4
4
15
High analysis
1
x
5
5
4
4
4
4
4
4
16
High status
1
x
5
5
5
5
5
5
4
4
17
Less hours
1
x
5
5
1
1
2
2
2
2
18
Minimum travel
1
x
5
5
2
2
3
3
4
4
Totals:
180
150
127
123



VALUES CLARIFICATION EXERCISE #2
JOB CANDIDATE ALTERNATIVES
PRODUCT MANAGER
(1 -5 Rating Scale, 5 = High)

A
B
C
D
E
F
G
H
I
Characteristics
of ideal candidate
Wgting:
H=3, M=2, L=1
Ideal
Cand.
Wghtd
(A*B)
Cand.
#1
Wghtd
(A*D)
Cand.
#2
Wghtd
(A*F)
Cand.
#3
Wghtd
(A*H)
Key Experience
1
People management
3
x
5
15
3
9
4
12
3
9
2
Project management
3
x
5
15
4
12
3
9
4
12
3
Product knowledge
2
x
5
10
3
6
4
8
3
6
4
Technical knowledge
2
x
5
10
3
6
4
8
5
10
5
Market knowledge
1
x
5
5
3
3
4
4
3
3
Experience Totals:
55
36
41
40
Key Skills/Qualities
1
Detail orientation
3
x
5
15
4
12
3
9
4
12
2
Diplomacy
3
x
5
15
4
12
2
6
3
9
3
Leadership
3
x
5
15
4
12
4
12
4
12
4
Written Communication
3
x
5
15
4
12
4
12
2
6
5
PM process knowledge
2
x
5
10
4
8
2
4
4
8
6
Organization
2
x
5
10
4
8
3
6
4
8
7
Verbal Communication
2
x
5
10
4
8
4
8
4
8
8
Respected by Engineers
1
x
5
5
4
4
3
3
5
5
9
Respected by Management
1
x
5
5
4
4
4
4
3
3
Skill Totals:
100
80
64
71
Grand Total:
155
116
105
111



VALUES CLARIFICATION EXERCISE #3
VENDOR ALTERNATIVES
(1 -5 Rating Scale, 5 = High)
A
B
C
D
E
F
G
H
I
Characteristics
of ideal vendor
Wgting:
H=3, M=2, L=1
Ideal
Vend.
Wghtd
(A*B)
Vend.
#1
Wghtd
(A*D)
Vend.
#2
Wghtd
(A*F)
Vend.
#3
Wghtd
(A*H)
1
Compatibility
3
x
5
15
3
9
4
12
3
9
2
Customizability
3
x
5
15
5
15
3
9
4
12
3
Ease of use
3
x
5
15
4
12
3
9
2
6
4
Fast operation
3
x
5
15
4
12
4
12
4
12
5
Low cost provider
3
x
5
15
5
15
2
6
3
9
6
Maximum features
3
x
5
15
5
15
5
15
4
12
7
Name brand, well known co.
3
x
5
15
2
6
5
15
5
15
8
Personalized service
3
x
5
15
4
12
3
9
2
6
9
Same day service call
3
x
5
15
5
15
3
9
3
9
10
Business staying power
2
x
5
10
3
6
3
6
5
10
11
Extended support line hours
2
x
5
10
5
10
5
10
3
6
12
Long-term player
2
x
5
10
1
2
3
6
5
10
13
800 service number
1
x
5
5
5
5
5
5
1
1
14
Low cost maintenance
1
x
5
5
5
5
4
4
4
4
15
Prior vendor relationship
1
x
5
5
1
1
5
5
1
1
Totals:
180
140
132
122
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