In his book, Grow: How Ideals Power Growth and Profit at the World’s Greatest Companies, Jim Stengel said it best: purpose mobilizes people in a way that pursuing profits alone never will.

According to Stengel’s 10-year growth study involving over 50,000 brands, companies driven by the purpose of improving people’s lives far outperform the competition – so much so that an investment in the “Stengel 50” would have been almost 400% more profitable than an investment in the S&P 500! These companies are driven by why they are in business rather than by what product or service they are offering.

Purpose Mobilizes People

A strong business purpose enables businesses to recruit, unite, and inspire all those they touch, from employees to customers, ultimately helping businesses deliver superior profit and growth. The principle extends across all boundaries – industry categories, B2B, online, retail, services, geography, scale and age of business.

If you’re running your company on EOS®, you have a business purpose in the Core Focus™ of your VTO™. It’s your Purpose/Cause/Passion (the reason for your business existence) together with your business niche. Are you fired up about it? Does your leadership team infuse the organization with energy around it? Are employees excited about being part of something bigger than themselves? If your Purpose/Cause/Passion has become a “check the box” item on your VTO, you will miss the benefits of having a compelling and contagious business purpose.

Purpose Transforms Culture

Here’s a story that illustrates how purpose transforms culture:

During President John F. Kennedy’s first tour of the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA), he asked an employee, “What do you do for NASA?” The employee responded with enthusiasm, “I’m helping put a man on the moon!” Kennedy asked, “Wow, what’s your role here?” And the employee replied, “I keep the place clean!”

With the right mindset any job can be seen as meaningful!

Next Steps

Written by Chris Naylor

This post originally appeared on the B.Inspired Blog in May 2018.