What is your organization’s purpose?

If you can’t answer that question – stop reading right now and click over to this post.  You have to know your purpose before you can make real progress.

Do you understand it?

Are you communicating it?  More importantly, do your people understand it?

Are you leveraging it?

When you can get your organization aligned behind a purpose the results can be magical.   When you can get your organization aligned behind a purpose the results can be magical. Click To Tweet

In 1997 when Steve Jobs came back to Apple Computers, Apple was hemorrhaging cash and on the brink of bankruptcy.  Jobs pulled his leadership team together and looked at all of the products they were selling.  They were trying to figure out how to sell all of that “stuff”.

In the middle of the discussion, Jobs called the meeting to a halt and said this: “Apple is not about what computers can do.  Apple is about what creative people can do with computers.  Apple is about people who think outside the box.  Apple is about people who use computers to change the world.”

The Power of Purpose

Was he focused on speeds and feeds as well as other cool product features?  No.  Although isn’t that where most people and organizations focus?

Jobs was focused on their purpose.  What was Apple really in business to do?  Jobs’ mission at the time was to change the world by providing great products that allow people to be creative in their work and play.

What about you?  Is your team or organization focused on speeds and feeds?  Or are you focused on your purpose?

Let me give you another example of how powerful purpose can be:

I was listening to local Dallas radio host David Johnson as he interviewed Kyle Noonan.  Kyle is CEO of Free Range Concepts which owns a unique collection of restaurants including Bowl & Barrel, MUTTS, The General Public and The Rustic.  All are unique and all are successful.

David was asking Kyle if the secret to their success was in the atmosphere, menu, food quality and service.  Kyle answered by saying, “Internally, we really focus on why we do what we do, not just how we do it or what we do.  Our mission is to create remarkable memories…we are not just a restaurant company or an entertainment company but we strive to create remarkable memories.  We just happen to own some restaurants.”

As I listened to that interview, I was reminded of a time I was in Bowl & Barrel waiting on a colleague.  My colleague was running late and I was perturbed.  He called to let me know he was still about 30 minutes away – not what I wanted to hear and my frustration obviously showed.

I had just hung up the phone when the restaurant manager came over and asked if I was OK.  I explained that I was meeting someone who was running quite late.

He looked at me and said, “Can I buy you a beer?”

Why?

I bet it was because their purpose is to create remarkable memories.  He knew I needed a state of mind change if I was going to create a remarkable memory that evening.

In 1997, Apple was hemorrhaging cash, they were on the brink of bankruptcy.  Fifteen years later they had become the most valuable company in the world.  I would argue a lot of it has to do with purpose.  Apple gets it.

Kyle Noonan gets it.  The manager at Bowl & Barrel gets it.

The power of purpose. 

Do you get it?  What do you need to do this week to bring your purpose into focus and really start focusing on it?


Having a well-define purpose is just one of the things that can help your organization drive to disruptive grown.  Looking for more ways?  Download our free resource guide:

free leadership guide

 

 

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