4 Easy Steps to Writing Effective Value Statements for Your Flight Department

Author By Jim Lara

Does your flight department have a mission and vision statement?

If so, it’s important to define the behavioral norms that your team will use to accomplish these goals. By documenting a set of core values—in the form of value statements—you will create ‘behavioral covenants’ for how your team will interact in a way that’s consistent with your mission.  Doing so will boost organizational efficiency and put you on the path of achieving your vision.

In this 4-part blog series, Gray Stone Advisors has shared:

Now let’s get to the final step!


Four Easy Steps to Writing Effective Value Statements

When created and implemented in the right way, your value statements will take on strong meaning and serve as your agreed-upon standards for evaluating the actions and behaviors of the team. Think of your value statements as guiding principles for how you’ll accomplish what you need to get done.


  1.  Brainstorm a list of desired behaviors. Perhaps your team wants each other to act trustworthy, honest and respectful. Maybe you agree that everyone should work with as much passion, dedication and compassion as possible. As a group, list all of the behaviors that represent the way you want to do business.

As you’re going through the process, answer these questions as a team:

  • What values already exist?
  • What values need emphasis?
  • How will these values impact our results?
  • How will we ensure we’re holding each other accountable to these behavior standards?
  • How will we use these values during ‘good times and bad times’?
  • How will these values help us spend our time, money and resources on the right things?
  • And so on…


2.  Align your values with the host corporation. Does your aviation department know what your parent company’s core values are? If they already exist, it’s best to work within the construct of the parent company. However, you may want to add meaning to these values and make them relevant to your aviation department. You can establish different values as long as your values support the overall vision, mission and values of the parent company.


3.  Breathe life into each value statement. Traditionally, we ask our clients to draft 6-8 value statements, which might include 4 to 6 words in each statement. The key is to write statements that will come to life—ones that have everyone’s buy-in. Sure, you can “set ‘em and forget ‘em”, but then the naysayers on your team will be right.To make your values come alive, everyone (including your department’s management and top role models) will need to adhere to the values, refer to them again and again—and (surprise, surprise) exhibit the right behaviors. If empowerment is a value, your line pilot might say, “Wow, the Director actually gave me a project and let me run with it.”


4.  Spread the good word! Display your newly defined value statements prominently in your flight department’s office and hangar walls, refer to them in team meetings, communicate them to your reporting executive and senior leadership team – and even your vendors and executive travelers. The more you talk about your values – and educate others on your way of doing business, the more they’re likely to be supportive in helping you accomplish your vision and mission.


Through our Gray Stone business aviation consulting practice, we often facilitate the creation of mission, vision and values statements. Put together, the vision, mission and value statements form the basis of a flight department’s culture and interactions. And, once these elements are put into daily practice, we can always detect a noticeable and measurable difference in behaviors, accountability and employee engagement.


Other Business Benefits

Effective teams that align around a common vision, mission and set of value statements:

  • Become very good at making decisions, planning work, resolving differences and conducting meetings in a collaborative way.
  • Develop a customer focus and make customer satisfaction a top priority.
  • Are empowered to improve their work processes to achieve the needed results.
  • Set goals and solve problems for continuous improvement.
  • Talk to one another.
  • Show respect and appreciation for other’s viewpoints.
  • Know how to manage conflicts by surfacing issues.
  • Are true partners in all aspects related to the business?
  • Want their team to succeed and help make success possible.


From our experience, we find that there’s a real thirst for this kind of work. When business aviation team members have a positive, supportive culture and a well-defined framework with which to operate, pretty soon you’ll notice that the team enjoys coming together because they’ve bought into a new way of thinking and working together.



Could your vision, mission and value statements use some finessing? Or does your aviation organization still need to develop them? Either way, perhaps your team could benefit from a strategy session or offsite meeting facilitated by impartial business aviation experts. If so, please reach out to us for a free 30-minute discussion.