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How to Write a Personal Value Statement

by Betsy Gallup

Put simply, a personal value statement is a concise and specific statement that outlines what is most important to you in your life. The better you define your personal values, the more capable you are of finding a career that is in harmony with those values. The statement can also help define your moral fiber to potential employers and set a standard by which to define your own success.

Target

Before you can write a personal value statement, you must define what is important to you. Make a list of important qualities, then rank the qualities in the order of importance. You will incorporate the top five to seven values into your statement. Consider what you are good at, what makes you feel good about yourself and what you want to achieve in the future. Typical values include such traits as simplicity, loyalty, integrity, inquisitiveness, ambition, accuracy.

Strengths

What you value is often closely tied to what you are good at because you are apt to spend more time and effort working at something you feel is important. Review your strengths as they relate to your values. Consider any inconsistencies between your values and your strengths and think about how you can make that inconsistency work to your advantage. For example, if you value family and have spent years at a job working away from your family, you can use this value as a reason for changing jobs.

Relationship

The best personal value statements speak to an interviewer. Not only should the statement be relatable to the average person, it should relate to the position for which you are interviewing. Stating you value teamwork when you are interviewing for a position where you will spend most of your time working alone will not win you any points with a perspective employer. Be ready to verbalize how your values and strengths make you the perfect candidate for the available position.

Evidence

Consider your behavior to date. Identify instances when you have used the values you listed to your advantage. You may find it useful to write out these instances and revisit them prior to an interview so you have a clear picture of the path between what you find important and how it ties to actions. An interviewer will certainly be interested in your success stories and how they relate to your values.

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