A Look Back at the Things that Inspired Me this Year

December 18, 2017

End of Year Recap

As 2017 winds down, I’m looking back at some of the books, podcasts, companies and quotes that inspired me this year. Some of these resources were influential in helping me develop my blog and my business, while others inspired the way I live. However, the best part has been sharing the idea of purposeful business with my clients, friends, students and most importantly, my family. They are the ones who truly inspire me.

Happy Holidays!


“Start Something that Matters” by Blake Mycoskie
This book was transformational for me in starting this blog and thinking deeper about brand purpose. In his story about starting TOMS, Blake Mycoskie shares valuable information about the journey to start a business and using your work to find greater meaning in what you do.

“10% Happier” by Dan Harris
This book was a natural segue for my fascination with minimalism and mindfulness. If you are interested in meditation and especially if you’re not, read this book. “10% Happier” addresses many misconceptions about meditation and is a perfect jumping off point.

I’m already looking forward to his next book: Meditation for Fidgety Skeptics.


“How I Built This with Guy Raz”
HIBT is probably my all-time favorite podcast. I love hearing how some of my favorite brands got their start as well as the challenges they overcame. I’ve used many of these stories in presentations and to better understand purposeful leadership.

Tip: If you aren’t a reader, listen to the HIBT with Blake Mycoskie for the story of TOMS.

“WOW in the World” 
If you’re not familiar with WITW, it might be because it’s a podcast for kids. I started playing these podcasts for my kids this year and it has led to some interesting discussions and ideas. Much like a TEDTalk, WITW helps me get them thinking critically. It exposes us (them and me) to new research and technology and challenges us to be problem-solvers.


Impossible Foods
After learning about plant-based meat and its environmental benefits, I started following Impossible Foods. My family recently tried the Impossible Burger and we were amazed at how much it resembles a burger from a cow. I believe in the future we will all be eating a lot more plant-based meat.

I tried mine at Bareburger, but the list of restaurants serving the Impossible Burger keeps growing.

I’m starting to love this company. From their purpose-led leadership (read more in my last post) and ‘Let’s Go Surfing’ mentality to the intense quality of their products, this company gets it on so many levels.


“The leaders of tomorrow more and more realize that having a strong head and a big heart is where you need to be.” – Peter McGuinness, Chobani

“Be a mission with a company, not a company with a mission.” – Simon Mainwaring, WeFirst




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Karen Bailey is a brand purpose consultant and specializes in helping companies define their purpose and align their business around it. In 2017, she launched the blog, Purpose Greater Than Profit, to start a meaningful conversation about the increasingly important role of brand purpose, purposeful leadership and a better way of doing business.


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