Old Republic International Corporation Biblical Values
The values of an organization are significant in establishing the culture and ethos of the way it operates and the impression it creates. The biblical values that highlight the way Christian organizations function and the way people within them relate to each other, include Christ-centeredness, valuing every individual, fairness and belonging, working together, exercising integrity in who they are and what they do, service before self, loyalty, and excellence. The teaching of the Bible concerning Christian leadership core values is relevant and essential. Values are strongly held beliefs that assist in guiding Christians’ leadership in their behavior and decision-making. They form the culture of an organization. This paper examines the biblical values that are displayed by the Old Republic International Corporation.
Background of Old Republic International Corporation
Old Republic International Corporation is a holding organization involved in insurance underwriting (Old Republic International Corporation, 2016). The corporation operates through several regulated insurance company subsidiaries. It mainly operates in the U.S. and Canada. Its headquarters, which are situated in Chicago, Illinois, comprised 8,200 employees as of 31 December 2015.
The company’s mission is to deliver the best insurance security and associated services to corporations, persons, and public institutes and maintain its policyholders’ and shareholders’ trust. Furthermore, the corporation was founded in 1923, although numerous acquired subsidiaries began operations much earlier. The company is one of America’s major insurance firms owned by shareholders. It is a commercial lines underwriter attending to the insurance needs of many organizations, which include several America’s leading industrial and financial services institutions (Old Republic International Corporation SWOT Analysis, 2015).
The Old Republic International Corporation provides numerous services covering a variety of insurance policies that assist in attracting many clients. Nevertheless, high rates of natural disasters may influence its margins. The services comprise commercial automobiles insurance, workers’ compensation, general liability coverage, primary mortgage insurance, and pool insurance. The company also offers title insurance for leaders and owners. Moreover, its minor life and accident insurance operations are incorporated in other businesses. It is as well inclusive of the operations of patent holding company and several internal service subsidiaries conducting payroll, investment management, minor marketing, and administrative services. The wide variety of services offered by the corporation enables it to attract varied clients and earn higher revenues (Old Republic International Corporation, 2016).
Moreover, the corporation got a total income of $5,766.1 in the 2015 financial year, which was 4.3% higher in comparison to the 2014 financial year. In addition, its operating profit was $631.8 million in the 2015 financial year, an increase of 3.7% over the 2014 financial year. The net profit of the corporation was $422.1 million for the 2015 financial year, recording an increase of 3% over the 2014 financial year (Old Republic International Corporation, 2016).
Discussion of the Biblical Value
Values refer to qualities that are regarded to be worthwhile as they represent an individual’s highest priorities and intensely held driving forces. They are conceptions of the desirable motivating force, characteristics of people, groups, organizations, and societies that influence choices made from the existing resources and means. The impact of values on people is the internal psychological reflection of more distilled levels of motivation, such as being concerned about a person’s interests, consequences, or consensus that become tangible to an observer in the form of attitudes, speech and actions. Values are consciously implemented to guide individuals in decision-making (Dhar & Indian Society for Training & Development, 2009). Moreover, value statements are based on values and outline the manner in which individuals would like to relate with each other in an organization. They denote statements concerning the way a company regards clients, dealers, and employees.
Biblical values denote accepting Jesus Christ as lord and savior and anchoring religious and spiritual values to biblical standards. Such standards form a strong basis for lasting vital values from God that are established on truth and love. Biblical values help in settling the differences that arise among groups with diverse commonly held beliefs (Osula & Ng, 2014).
The first significant feature of values is that they are a type of belief regarding what is good or desirable. Secondly, values are enduring since they are arrestable enough for behavior to be consistent and predictable, but not so stable as to impede the opportunities for growth and change. Thirdly, they motivate behavior and guide evaluations and decisions. Therefore, values reinforce and inform patterns of behavior and attitudes on particular issues.
A significant element of biblical value-based leadership is the principle of leading with character. Misconduct and highly questionable behavior in both faith-based and secular environments have led to distrust, cynicism, and antagonism toward leadership in all social institutions, particularly business organizations. There are records showing failure of leaders in exhibiting the significance of biblical values in private and public leadership (Osula & Ng, 2014). Biblical values stress on servant leadership, as servant leaders are driven by the inner motivation to serve others. They are determined to serve their followers to become servant leaders themselves. Additionally, integrity and concern for followers demonstrated by servant leaders rise their trust and loyalty, which foster the growth of a better relationship between them and subordinates. The ten general constituents of servant leadership include listening, empathy, healing, awareness, persuasion, conceptualization, foresight, stewardship, commitment to the growth of people and building community (Kraemer, 2011).
By listening to followers, servant leaders are able to identify their need, which assists them in learning the aspirations of the group. Showing empathy denotes determinations made by the servant leaders to accept followers instead of rejecting them. Moreover, managers who show their subordinates empathy assist them in handling their emotional concerns. On the other hand, healing explains the procedure through which a servant leader seeks to make the followers whole (Kraemer, 2011).
Awareness enables leaders to reinforce followers and convince them to perceive circumstances in a clear manner. Additionally, leaders are supposed to convince and enable the followers to develop confidence and capability. Furthermore, conceptualization denotes the ability of the servant leader to provoke the followers’ capability to set great goals in life. Foresight is exhibited by servant leaders considering and exploring what they learned from the past, the current realities, and the probable effect of decisions for the future. Stewardship implies leaders being devoted to serving other individuals’ needs. They consider all people’s needs and foster their personal, professional and spiritual development. Servant leaders also have the responsibility of engaging in building community through researching on various ways of building the community among their workers. Using creditable values and ethical behavior, they can show others an unusual devotion to honesty and love. When leaders exemplify such qualities of integrity, trust, humility, and servant hood, they set a precedence of commitment and community in an entire organization (Dhar & Indian Society for Training & Development, 2009)
Efficient leaders exemplify noble and humane needs and values. They should not be secular, personal, self-invested, and hegemonic, but they should serve all individuals by firmly and gently creating and reminding them of their responsibility to the welfare of the whole. Once leaders clearly understand the basis of their values and devote themselves to leading with a solid value set, they can work towards ensuring that their organization is operating on a similar value path.
The process begins by comparing the values of people with the current values of an organization. Additionally, leaders are required to ensure that individual values are in line with that of the organization. Such a process can be conducted by assigning employees the right duties according to their training and experience. The process links individual meaning and purpose with an organization’s mission and vision. Another way of aligning individual and organizational values is through attaining employee buy-in using operational norms that drive their anticipated behavior. The second stage in creating an organization’s value system entails communicating the projected organizational values clearly. The process can be done by incorporation of values in vision statements, corporate policies, and training programs. For instance, a set of prioritized values as part of the vision statement can offer instructions concerning the way an organization’s objective will be carried out (Osula & Ng, 2014).
Every person desires to work in an organization that values excellence. In addition, vision statements that do not match the values of employees do not motivate them to work hard. A clear comprehension of values and the capability of communicating them well are crucial to leading efficiently. The final phase in the integration of a value system is ensuring that follower and leadership behavior is observed and assessed to ensure they are in alignment and reflect the stated mission and vision of the organization. Former moral leaders can easily become contented and begin functioning with a motive of self-interest that does not recognize the corporate value system in place (Osula & Ng, 2014).
Discussion of how the Value is Displayed
The Old Republic International Corporation has displayed biblical value in its activities in many ways. The company practices loyalty in its operations through the insurance subsidiaries providing the beneficiaries of their insurance products and services quality assurance of the promises they make. For employees, the corporation provides a conducive environment whereby they can work towards achieving their career and economic objectives in the context of Old Republic’s business objectives (Old Republic International Corporation, 2015). Such an activity indicates that the company values every person and is committed to excellence.
Additionally, the company adheres to governance and management practices that enhance a dependable and steady environment for honoring its promises of financial indemnity. In terms of integrity, the corporation monitors the suitability of its internal control and financial reporting systems and practices to protect assets and adhere to appropriate laws and regulations. It also ensures that proper policies and practices are established to manage the identified risks that the enterprise experiences (Old Republic International Corporation, 2016).
The company supervisors support subordinates in a manner that all of them become successful. They do it by focusing on employees and supporting them both in their hard times at work and through the moments of personal crisis. The management also offers employees recognition and appreciation, counsel, and supports them emotionally. Moreover, caring for employees increases their satisfaction and boosts their morale, which results in retention. The company understands that the factors that make employees work hard and stay in an organization for a long time are quality work, meaningful responsibilities, recognition, respect, growth opportunities, and friendly supervisors.
Assigning extra responsibilities to employees, which is a sign of trust, has made them develop a sense of pride and improve their relationship with the management. Such a decision is effective because employees seek variety, greater control on the processes, and authority to take decisions in their current work. They require opportunities for learning and growing.
The company has put in efforts to ensure that its employees are connected by establishing an employee advocacy group that listens to all their concerns. The organization also has a system of internal salary parity where all workers with the same performance receive a similar compensation (Old Republic International Corporation, 2016). In addition, it offers promising young leaders opportunities to grow by allowing them to share their innovation ideas with the leadership board in their meetings. The company management also supports its employees by enhancing an environment of trust and inculcating its values into them.
An organization that holds its core values intensely and shares them widely strengthens its culture. Moreover, leaders who ascribe more value-based leadership tend to be more willing to make personal investments needed to overcome resistance and are likely to attain their goals. The essence of value-based leadership is that leaders should learn to establish an alternative system of belief and allow others to adopt it as their own. Moreover, leaders’ values and behavior are significantly associated with the values and behaviors of subordinates. The behaviors exhibited by leaders are critical in determining the outcomes of value-based management techniques and subordinates may take cues from their leaders and model their value-based behaviors after those of the organization’s leadership.
Organizational values define acceptable norms for subordinates. Additionally, great leaders need to be aware of their role of shaping values and educating through vivid, living, personal example that eventually directs the course of an organization. In companies with a strong set of values, leaders have more evidence to let go of power and authority. It is important to note that a strong value system forms boundaries and helps in establishing a unified front and enhancing teamwork. Furthermore, lack of organizational values may cause the subordinates to follow their own individual values, which can make values to be misaligned. Therefore, leaders have the role of ensuring that values expressed align with the stated values of the organization.
In conclusion, it is significant for all organizational leaders to serve as good role models to develop trusting and mutually supportive relationships. Additionally, every aspect of an organization needs to be well defined. They should focus on similar values and share the same assumptions to reduce many complications, disconnects, and obstacles that can hinder effective performance. Cultural incongruence in an organization usually stimulates an awareness of the need for change. It makes members to be uneasy and protest against vagueness and lament the pretense that they see when organizational behaviors tend to be against what they regard to be advocated values. Old Republic’s profile as a longstanding investment makes it one of the best companies in the American industry. The Corporation’s performance reveals an entrepreneurial spirit, an essential long-term orientation in managing its business, and a corporate structure, which enhances accountability and promotes the taking of practical business risks.
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