A Personal Creed is similar to a Personal Mission Statement or a Personal Audit, so keep it short, concise, and clear, no longer than one page. But you must show how you arrived at the creed by defining terms and citing significant personal experiences and/or people (e.g., family, friends, teachers, coaches). Your creed reflects your underlying values. So, where do these come from? You should do this before you write your creed.
Which values or virtues are important to you? Why? Make a list. Then make a list of the people and events that have been important in your life. Why? What have been the negative experiences in your life? What have you learned from them?
The creed is a statement that reflects who and what you are as well as where you want to go. It is your narrative. You also may think of it in terms of the Purpose of You (as opposed to the Purpose of Business or the Purpose of Government).
Your creed is something to reflect on every day and should be your guide in everyday actions and decision-making. In this sense, it is lived out with others in community. So, ask yourself how does my creed and who I am affect others? How do others affect me? What needs to change in my life? What can I change?
The Personal Creed forms the basis of a Professional Creed or Mission Statement, which, in turn, fits into the organizational Mission Statement. How well aligned are your Personal Creed with your organization’s mission, whether you are an intern or full-time employee? What accounts for the degree of difference?
Note that the creed is not an action plan for career goals or self “branding.” It is a statement of who you are not as an employee, professional, or commodity but as a human being. The human being is the locus of ethical decision making in business and life in general.