Many entrepreneurs started their businesses with the vision of making a difference in the world. They defined their purpose early on, and very often it wasn’t just about making a profit. However, as businesses mature and new leadership steps in their sense of purpose is lost and they exist purely for the bottom line (profit).
The global pandemic has certainly been an eye opener for most businesses that have had to dig deep in order to stay afloat, especially those whose sole reason for existing was profit. Some have reinvented themselves, while others closed shop. Those who’ve made it through the first and second wave of the virus and full-blown lockdown have chosen to reassess their purpose – and it couldn’t have come at a better time.
Globally there is a move to assess what impact a business truly has on various factors. From the environment including climate change and sustainability; social constructs such as diversity and human rights in the workplace, consumer protection and animal welfare; and governance, which refers to management structures, employee relations, and executive and employee compensation. With ESG driving this shift, many businesses will be rethinking the roles they play in society which, for once, won’t be only about profit.
What does having purpose mean for your business?
Having a purpose inspires everything in the business, from systems to processes and company culture or internal communication, PR and mass communication.
It is the simplicity that is needed in the VUCA world (volatile, uncertain, complex and ambiguous) we exist in today and an imperative to business sustainability in a world post Covid-19.
Know the difference between purpose and the means to achieve it
Most businesses link their purpose to what they sell, produce or build.
A product or service is not necessarily the purpose, and in most instances it isn’t. It is the means by which a business achieves its higher purpose.
But what happens when founders sell off and a new team takes over?
The business’s purpose often resides in the…
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Read the full article by Pepe Marais, Co-Founder and Chief Creative Officer, Joe Public, as well as a host of other topical management articles written by professionals, consultants and academics in the April/May 2021 edition of BusinessBrief.
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