Every business should know its purpose, but not every business is a purposeful business.
Let’s unpack this…
I believe every business should know its purpose. Working with clients and in my own business, I’ve seen how much more effective and efficient a business becomes when the purpose is clear.
A clear purpose guides decision-making and streamlines marketing and sales efforts. Knowing your purpose gives you direction when faced with options and difficult choices as a leader. It saves time and money while making you better equipped to know what fits and what doesn’t.
However, after helping companies clarify their purpose and build consistency, I’ve learned knowing your purpose does not make you a purposeful business.
So what does make a purposeful business?
A purpose greater than profit.
A purposeful business is guided by a belief that purpose not profit drives the organization forward. It’s not enough to know your purpose. Purposeful organizations are often filled with ‘both/and’ thinkers. To pursue a purpose greater than profit, businesses need to consider how they can both make money and improve the world around them.
A purposeful leader.
The desire by leadership to pursue their purpose is the key to building a purposeful business. Purposeful leaders are passionate and often become filters for the organization. They should constantly be asking, “How does this align with or demonstrate our purpose?” Without a high level of commitment and accountability, it’s difficult for an organization to deliver meaningful impact.
The greatest different between knowing your purpose and becoming a purposeful business is alignment. A well-defined brand purpose should inspire your people and your process. Companies build trust among stakeholders when what they say aligns with what they do. Alignment is about knowing your purpose and then using it to shape the processes, policies and systems that guide how you do business.
I believe becoming a purposeful business means building a business that makes money and delivers meaningful impact to its stakeholders. Meaningful impact is the result of knowing your purpose, having leaders who believe in it and aligning your operations to support it.
Are you ready to take the steps to define your purpose and align your business around it? We’re excited to announce the launch of The Alignd Business, a collaborative, 12-week process to help founders and business leaders define their purpose, craft meaningful stories and design new ways to use their business for good. Email firstname.lastname@example.org to reserve your spot.