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PBM Quick Start

 
 

What is Quick Start?

Quick Start is a resource that helps you be successful sooner by:

  • connecting you with the big picture of Principle Based Management (PBM) and a handful of principles that are core to everything we do at Koch Companies. 
     

  • introducing you to the five dimensions (the organizing structure of our principle-based framework) and the following principles: Principle-Based vs. Rule-Based, Mutual Benefit, Contribution Motivated, Respect – Treating People as Individuals, and Challenge.
     

  • sparking your application of PBM by providing examples and suggestions for you to try things on your own while you learn a lot from other sources, like your supervisor and teammates.

 

You Choose: Self-Guided, Facilitated or Some of Each

For each topic in Quick Start, there is a self-guided and a facilitated option. You can even do a combination of both. Regardless of which you choose, the key points and learning objectives are the same, so choose the approach that works best for you. 

One last thing…Quick Start is not a sprint! You are encouraged to take time between topics to digest the content, talk with your supervisor and others who can help you learn, and apply the principles.

SELF-GUIDED

Choose your own pace through a digital learning path.

 

FACILITATED SESSIONS

Register to participate in live, online sessions* with other employees and a PBM facilitator.

*Facilitated sessions are one hour and only available to Koch employees.

 
 
 

PRINCIPLE-BASED VS. RULE-BASED

At Koch, our principles guide everything including visions, strategies, policies, practices, partnerships, investments and performance evaluations. These principles encourage entrepreneurship, discovery and transformation. They apply universally, whereas detailed rules and methods only work in specific applications under certain conditions, and even then tend to stifle motivation and creativity.

A principle-based approach is not an absence of rules. But when policies, processes or procedures are necessary, they must be judged against general principles. We expect them to be continually challenged and improved – or eliminated when they undermine progress.

 

Why Is This Important? 

Having a principle-based approach frees everyone to think and innovate – to develop different methods and solutions – rather than mindlessly follow instructions. It creates an environment where every employee knows what to do to maximize value creation and is motivated to do it without being told.  Applying principles requires employees to be collaborative and use their judgment.

 

Understand It Better

 

Examples

These examples show what someone might think or say if they have a principle-based approach or rules-based approach to their work.

 

What Principles Do We Use in Principle Based Management?

There are dozens of principles – what we call principles of human progress – in PBM. These principles come from many sources and have been proven over time to promote peace, civility, opportunity and fulfillment.

Years ago, Charles Koch believed an organization could benefit from applying these principles as well. As the company grew, it became necessary to document and organize these principles so they could be used by everyone. Today we call this Principle Based Management.

We have learned from decades of experience that we have succeeded to the extent we have correctly applied them and failed when we haven’t. Throughout Quick Start, you’ll get to explore a handful of these principles.

 
 

Give it a Try

The power of Principle Based Management happens through application. Discussing and exploring the principle with others is one way to get started.

 

Want to Join a Facilitated Session About This?

 
 
 
 

THE FIVE DIMENSIONS

The five dimensions provide an organizing structure for applying the principles of human progress to enable every employee to succeed long term by creating superior value for others.

  • The Vision Dimension helps you connect to the team/organizational vision.

  • The Virtue and Talents Dimension helps you self-actualize and become more contribution motivated.

  • The Knowledge Dimension helps you learn and improve and succeed in a rapidly changing world. 

  • The Comparative Advantage Dimension helps you pursue work you are good at and care about and collaborate with your co-workers to maximize overall results.

  • The Motivation Dimension helps you maximize your contribution to the team and Koch’s long-term success by realizing your potential.

 
 

Examples

Principle Based Management, organized by the five dimensions, is not separate from our work, it’s how we work! Here are some examples of what this can look like.

 
 

Give it a Try

The power of Principle Based Management happens through application. Discussing and exploring the principle with others is one way to get started.

 
 
 

MUTUAL BENEFIT

This principle guides us to take a win-win approach in all we do. It goes beyond a simple transaction that benefits both parties – it's a proactive mindset that causes us to seek out relationships and opportunities where we can succeed by benefiting others. When we do this while consuming fewer resources, our profit is a result of benefiting our customers and society. This principle also guides us to avoid situations where one party benefits at the expense of others (win-lose).

 

Why Is This Important? 

Mutual benefit is foundational to the role of business in society and Koch’s Vision. It is the only way to succeed long-term. That is why we pursue mutually beneficial relationships with all core constituencies – employees, customers, suppliers, partners, communities and governments. We seek to understand what they value and then cooperate with them to achieve mutually beneficial outcomes. Trust is the foundation for such relationships.

Some of our most important constituencies are customers and employees. These two videos explore how we pursue mutually beneficial outcomes and relationships.

Customers

Ever notice that you and the seller say “thank you” when you buy something? This video shows how mutual benefit plays out for customer and supplier.

Employees

The old cliché is true: Good people are a company’s most valuable resource. Hear leaders discuss some ways we strive for mutual benefit with each employee.

 
 

Examples

Applying the principle of mutual benefit requires us to have a win-win mindset – one where we seek situations where both parties win. This is in contrast with a win-lose mindset, which is rooted in the belief that for one party to win, others must lose. These examples show what someone might think or say if they have a win-win mindset or win-lose mindset. 

 

Give it a Try

The power of Principle Based Management happens through application. Discussing and exploring the principle with others is one way to get started.

 

Want to Join a Facilitated Session About This?

 
 
 
 
 

RESPECT – TREATING PEOPLE AS INDIVIDUALS

Respect is more than being polite. Being kind and treating one another well is important, but our principle of respect is much deeper than that. An important element of this principle is treating people as individuals. 

“Wherever a paradigm of respecting each person as an individual is embraced, there are much greater levels of freedom, peace, civility, trust and human progress. Treating everyone with dignity and respect not only leads to better outcomes, it is the right thing to do.” (Principle in Brief: Respect)

 

Take a look at the chart below. For each situation, which would you prefer?

 AB
Job DutiesYou work with your supervisor to customize your work to fit your aptitudes and the business needs. Your tasks and responsibilities are identical to everyone who has the same job title.
FeedbackYou are given honest, specific and individualized feedback about your performance.

Your performance is reduced to a generic, annual rating.

Working TogetherYou and your co-workers are encouraged to offer ideas, solve problems, innovate and think for yourselves.Only employees in certain positions are expected or asked to offer ideas, solve problems and think for themselves.
DevelopmentYou are encouraged to know your strengths and limitations and develop a perspective on how you can improve and increase your contribution.You are directed to develop based on a pre-determined career path and/or set of activities.

 

 

Which column did you choose most? Watch the video below to see how the two columns differ and which one best represents how Koch Companies try to do things! 

 

Examples

Respecting each person as an individual informs how we approach roles, employee development, compensation, decision-making authority and many other practices. Here are some examples of practices that respect each person as an individual contrasted with practices that that don’t respect each person as an individual.  

 

Important Note: Practices that don’t respect each person as an individual often value the efficiency of a one-sized-fits-all approach or assume people can or cannot do something based on a general characteristic. Such practices create barriers that exclude or limit people. Not only do we try to avoid these practices, we actively pursue approaches that respect each person as an individual and empower everyone to more fully develop and apply their abilities.

 

Give it a Try

The power of Principle Based Management happens through application. Discussing and exploring the principle with others is one way to get started.

 

Want to Join a Facilitated Session About This?

 
 
 
 

CONTRIBUTION MOTIVATED

When you are contribution motivated, you seek to discover, develop and utilize your abilities to succeed by helping others improve their lives. You are energized by creatively getting results which enables you to live a life of meaning.

 

Why Is This Important? 

To be successful, we need employees who are motivated to maximize their contribution to Koch’s long-term success, exemplify Our Values and have abilities that are additive to the team. 

We strive to hire and retain people who are contribution motivated first and foremost – and reinforce that motivation through individualized roles and responsibilities, coaching, development and rewards.

 

Understanding What it Means to Be Contribution Motivated

Below is a tool we call "Motivations and Behaviors for Organizational and Individual Success." It clearly articulates differences in thinking, behaviors, and attitudes between people who are primarily contribution motivated and the alternative - what we call being primarily deficiency motivated.

 People Who Are Contribution Motivated...People Who Are Deficency Motivated...
Being Self-Aware

Recognize what they are and are not good at (reality-based view). Prefer meaningful work.

Have personal values of integrity and humility.

Know when they need help and ask for it, especially with compliance.

Don’t believe they can contribute. 

Are overconfident in their abilities.

Are extremely sensitive to feedback and criticism.

Striving to Realize Potential

Are lifelong learners – are curious, seek feedback and demonstrate courage in learning their talents and what they are passionate about.

Define success as making a positive difference for others.

Seek responsibilities that align with how they can contribute the most.

Are passive (want to be told what to do, don’t think for themselves).

Are comfortable with the status quo; find excuses for not changing or improving.

Measure success in comparison to others (money, status, pedigree, titles, etc.). 

Seeking Mutually Beneficial Results

Are intentionally inclusive, treat everyone with respect, and collaborate and work well with others. 

Proactively share knowledge and ideas, provide and solicit challenge, develop knowledge networks, and build trusted relationships.

Work in a mutually beneficial way to drive results for the company and key constituents to create the greatest long-term value. 

Believe everything is a competition and have a win-lose or silo mentality.

Game the system, take shortcuts, don’t share information. Try to succeed at the expense of others.

Blame others for failures and mistakes. (When it doesn’t work out, “It wasn’t my fault.”)

Contributing Creatively

Demonstrate courage in dealing with the unknown and challenging situations (problems, change, new opportunities).

Have grit, resilience, and can-do attitude.

Always push to find new and better ways to do things. Focus on results and outcomes. 

Go through the motions, have weak work ethic, avoid responsibility and accountability.

Are protectionist, resist change, and have a “not-invented-here” mentality.

Quick to complain rather than finding, recommending, and implementing solutions. 

 

 

Examples

These contrasting examples can help you better understand what it looks like when someone is contribution motivated, and when they are not.

 

Give it a Try

The power of Principle Based Management happens through application. Discussing and exploring the principle with others is one way to get started.

 

Want to Join a Facilitated Session About This?

 
 
 
 

CHALLENGE

We define challenge as continual questioning and brainstorming to find a better way. Doing this well involves offering ideas, asking questions and listening when others do the same. Challenge is an opportunity to learn, not a chance to dismiss another person’s idea or show off.

 

Why Is This Important? 

Imagine a team where everyone feels comfortable offering new and diverse ideas – even when they are radically different. They freely raise concerns and engage in productive discussions – even when it’s uncomfortable. Leaders aren’t just willing to hear concerns and ideas – they actively invite them. Such a team is more likely to foster innovation, effectively solve problems and create value for the company, customers and society.

 

Examples

One part of challenge is offering ideas and asking questions. Another part is reacting appropriately when others ask you questions and offer suggestions. Below are some examples that give you a sense of how important it is that we’re all good at both.   

 
 

Challenge in Your Everyday Work

Sometimes new employees are surprised that challenge is more than encouraged – it's expected! In this video, listen to leaders talk about how supervisors create an environment where challenge is a regular part of how teams interact with one another: 

 

Give it a Try

The power of Principle Based Management happens through application. Discussing and exploring the principle with others is one way to get started.

 

Want to Join a Facilitated Session About This?

 
 
 
 

WHAT'S NEXT?

 
 

Give it a Try

The power of Principle Based Management happens through application. Discussing and exploring the principle with others is one way to get started.

 

Keep Learning

Learning and applying PBM is on-going! Visit this website occasionally to find new content and learning opportunities.

 

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