Why do you do what you do?

Uncategorized Mar 09, 2021

Continuing our conversation about Strategy, and understanding the base of strategy in The Core, which is your values, which we discussed last week. Your Purpose, which is what we talk about this week. And next week, we round the Core with Competencies.

If the Core Values are the soul of the organization, then the core Purpose, or what some call ‘the mission’, gives it heart. When you ask ‘why’ you get up every morning, why the company exists, why you created the business, the Purpose is the answer. Why does what we do matter? Why do our customers care if we are here or not? What difference in the world are we making?

And while making money is a great idea, it isn’t going to rally the troops around you and convince them to pour their enthusiasm and energy into showing up every day ready to make a difference. And ask yourself, do you want someone showing up for a paycheck, or do you want someone showing up to help you achieve this big idea you have? Which one do you think is going to show up with that energy and enthusiasm you were looking for when you hired them? Right! 

Besides, research shows that if you can engage the heart of the employee, not just the head, they are going to give you 40% more effort in their job!

Some examples of Purpose that ignite team engagement are things like 3M: Innovation, Disney: Happiness and Wal-Mart: Robin Hood.

Really powerful, thought out Purpose typically only needs one or two words.

Mine? You Matter.  My husband and I always believed the people who worked for you mattered and mattered a lot. We made sure that every employee understood we appreciated them, we wanted them there and we expected a lot from them. Sometimes more than they expected of themselves or thought they were capable of.

Now that I’m back out on my own again, I want to continue that very strong belief that especially David was so famous for. I want to be able to show founders that teams can be key and are essential in building a great business. But where this is typically a struggle for founders; great teams, it doesn’t have to be.

How do you figure out what your Purpose is? It’s a team effort! It takes sitting down and really figuring out why you, as a company and brand, are here every day doing what you are doing. Be careful, however! Too many teams, when they sit down to do this exercise, create a list of promises. Things they promise their customer. This is great and it has a purpose but not here. This requires deeper thought. Ask why do you provide the ‘best talent’? Why do you help ‘save time’? Why? Why? Why?  Asking why, typically about 5 times, should get you to the point of Purpose.

If you and your team would like help understanding your Core Purpose, let’s schedule a call.


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