SINCE I’m letting my Christian worldview be more visible in this blog, I need to expand on this concept of “values-based,” and how it relates to “Christian values” or even “spiritual values.”

My view is that there’s a broad concept of being values-based that may, or may not, be explicitly religious.  “Values,” to my thinking, are goals and outlooks which are to a positive benefit of people and society, which many would be attracted to for altruistic reasons.

Some good examples might be:

  • We strive for honesty in every communication and transaction.
  • We give 10% of our earnings to community charities, as directed by our employees every quarter.
  • We encourage all employees to devote 20% of their work time to creative endeavors and educational development.

These particular values aren’t particularly religious, but arguments could be made that they exist because of the business leaders’ moral grounding.

Examples of more explicit Christian values might be:

  • We are closed on Sundays, to give employees and customers the chance to go to church and be with their families.
  • We have committed goals to give 10% of our firstfruits to the Church.
  • The fish logo on our sign reminds us that God is our guide, and we are serving at His direction.
  • We start every meeting with a prayer as our moral grounding.

It’s a courageous act in our society to build a business which is explicitly Christian.  You’re taking the risk that some people will be turned off by the approach – employees, customers, and partners.  And in our 21st century America, you’re assuming an ever-changing risk of government regulation and lawsuits.

I’m not trying to “sell” you on taking your business into such challenging territory.  If it’s appropriate for you and what you’re trying to achieve, wonderful.  But many others will see the non-religious approach to a foundation of values as the best way to build goodness in this world.

We all need to be helping each other to build good in the world.