Let’s Talk About Purpose!
By Emma-Jayne Gooch
What is purpose? What is this “why” that everyone is talking about and what does it mean? Let’s ask google:
- the reason for which something is done or created or for which something exists
- a person’s sense of resolve or determination
- have as one’s intention or objective:
Have you ever met “that” person? You know that one that just seems to have their shit together. They are always happy, passionate, driven and they constantly get shit done and seem to be winning at life? It is very likely that this person knows and is living their purpose. They have a clear roadmap and only do the things that take them closer to delivering their purpose. If you ask them to do something and it isn’t in line with their purpose they will give you a big fat no, because they know what feeds their soul, what gets them out of bed in the morning and they really are winning at life!
So let’s talk about business. Have you ever seen “that” business? You know the one that is outperforming their competitors, that has loyal customers, happy stakeholders, an engaged workforce that are high performing and seem to love what they do and on top of that they are attracting all the best recruits? Guess what…..I bet they have a purpose. I bet that company is purpose driven. They have a clear purpose a North Star to which every business decision is based upon. It is the backbone of their organisation and informs every decision. People work with them and for them as they can clearly see what the organisation believes in and they believe in it too.
So don’t just take my word for it let’s look at some stats:
When you have a sense of purpose your brain chemistry changes. These chemicals change everything from your perception of pain, your ability to handle difficult and challenging environments, and even your health and wellbeing.
The Rush Memory and Aging project, which began in 1997, finds that when comparing patients who say they have a sense of purpose with those who say they don’t, the former are:
• 2.5 times more likely to be free of dementia
• 22 percent less likely to exhibit risk factors for stroke
• 52 percent less likely to have experienced a stroke
79% of business leaders recently surveyed by PwC believe that an organisation’s purpose is central to business success.
77% of adults would consider a company’s purpose when applying for a job
90% of people are willing to earn less money to do more meaningful work
89% of people believe it is important for an employer to have a clear mission and purpose
56% say company culture is more important than salary when it comes to job satisfaction
I don’t believe purpose is a “fluffy” thing I believe it is the core of our being. Someone can’t tell you what your purpose is, it comes from within you. It is based upon your life experiences, your stories and your beliefs. This is the same for business. A Purpose isn’t a marketing strapline, or a sentence on a wall. It is the stories around why your organisation was created, why your people work there and the legacy you want to leave. It is your North Star to which every business decision is made against.
After 5.5 years working at Sellafield I decided the time was right to follow my personal purpose “to be the light to help others to shine”. That is when I set up Plain Purpose Ltd. Understanding your own purpose gives you a true sense of direction. Purpose driven individuals are happier, more passionate, able to overcome adversity to deliver on their goals and ambition. A strong purpose statement sets the boundaries and direction in your professional life.
If you want to know more my website is: www.plainpurpose.co.uk