How renewing our values became a full team effort

Values are a living document

We believe that our values are Tenzo’s beating heart. We strive to ensure that these align with our mission to help food and beverage businesses become less wasteful, reduce the impact that humanity is having on the planet and create more efficient fast-growing businesses.

But after a lot of growth over the last couple of years, we realised that our initial values needed some revisiting to make them feel more authentic, less generic and reflect what working at Tenzo is really all about.


values at tenzo

Team effort

To achieve this, last November we got every team member, regardless of their job title, type of contract, or location, to take part in our “Values Workshop”. Having the whole team involved ensured that everyone had a voice in this process.

During the workshop, we asked the team to think about their individual experiences as well as discussing the current values in small groups. Everyone filled out this worksheet so that we were then able to come together and debate everyone’s ideas.

What was interesting to witness during the process was how the refreshed values began to form organically from the different opinions and priorities each person had. This was a clear reflection of the fact that although we all come from diverse backgrounds, we are aiming for the same mutual goal.

That said, we definitely had moments where we didn’t agree, but we listened to what others had to say, respected each other's opinions and had constructive conversations about challenges we were having as a business.

At the end of the session, each group nominated a spokesperson from their group to support the next phase of the value refresh journey. We closed the day with celebratory pizza and beers - there was definitely a vibe of excitement and pride in the air as we knew this was the beginning of something big.

Frame 567

Values Squad

Having gathered all the workshop feedback, we asked each group spokesperson to join Christian and Adam to represent their workshop group - the Values Squad was born.

The squad’s job was to consolidate, prioritise and challenge the ideas gathered to find out how we should reshape our values.

We wanted to make sure that the new set of values would:

  • Build on Tenzo’s mission and vision;

  • Set the morale compass for the team and strengthen our company culture; and

  • Align with the values of our customers and partners within the F&B ecosystem.

values at tenzo

The new values

After two months, countless drafts and many meetings, we were ready to unveil the refreshed values to the Tenzo team.

Our founders had taken everything we put forward in the Values Squad and gone away to come up with the best wording to embody what Tenzo would strive to be and presented the final values to us all in a company-wide meeting.

Without further ado, introducing Tenzo’s Company Values. We are:

passionate about people

Passionate about our people

Create a supportive and diverse environment for our people to grow

customer obsessedCustomer obsessed

Ensure our customers succeed and helping them drive efficient and sustainable growth

Always experimenting and learningAlways experimenting and learning

Move fast to create elegant and innovative solutions

A trusted partnerA trusted partner

Build trusted and secure services that put the customer's needs first

Socially responsibleSocially responsible

Strive for greatness as a company while improving the society and environment we live in

What has changed:

We have now:

  • Streamlined our values from 7 to 5, which has made them more memorable;

  • Included the use of verbs when describing the values to give a sense of momentum (create, ensure, move, build, and strive);

  • Tailored our values to be more relevant to the team so they can better identify with them.

Living our values

We completed our values refresh at the beginning of 2020, before any of us could predict what would happen this year. Whilst we have begun to put our values into action through a range of initiatives, we, like other businesses, are continuing to adapt to our new working-from-home environment.

A few ways we’ve brought our new values to life so far include:

  • Setting up a pulse-check survey about the values and asking the team to contribute any ideas on how we can keep bringing them to life on a daily basis;

  • Creating sub-teams focusing on initiatives associated with each value, including our Diversity and Inclusion Squad, for example; and

  • Adding our value icons as emojis in Slack so that they can be celebrated on a day-to-day basis.

There is even more room to grow and much more we would like to do. We are certain, now more than ever, that even though we don’t see our values framed and hanging on the walls of our office every day, we can keep them present in our actions and decision-making at Tenzo.

What’s next…

Watch our for our next blog post on culture to find out how we’re continuing to operationalise our values, and to understand more about the values themselves.

Posted in Tenzo

Camila McKenzie

Written by Camila McKenzie