I recently reread an older HBR blog post by Graham Kenny that details the difference between the increasingly popular idea of brand purpose and the traditional corporate drivers of vision, mission, and values.
His conclusion echoes our beliefs about the role and impact of a company purpose:
“If you’re crafting a purpose statement, my advice is this: To inspire your staff to do good work for you, find a way to express the organization’s impact on the lives of customers, clients, students, patients – whomever you’re trying to serve. Make them feel it.”
Mr. Kenny’s closing statement, “make them feel it”, goes to the heart of what it is to be meaningful as a company or brand. Meaningful ideas take the impact that you have on people beyond the cognitive level. Meaning goes much deeper by touching our universal, innate, and deeply-held aspiration to do good and worthy things in our lives.
Brand Purpose changes the way people think, feel, and act
The feelings that flow from meaningful connections are profound, yet they often operate below the surface of consciousness. As such, people may not be readily able to talk about these feelings, but there’s no question that meaning resonates within us all, and has the power to change the way we think, feel, and act.
A strong and compelling purpose helps employees better understand, work to, and feel personally accountable for the company’s vision, mission, and values. Think of purpose as the energy that will make those elements work more efficiently.
Purpose leads to significant business outcomes
Energizing your workplace through purpose has further benefits:
– Purpose-led leaders and managers work with greater passion and in a more aligned and coordinated fashion.
– Engaged and motivated employees work with greater levels of collaboration, self-initiative, and innovation.
– Customer relationships prosper from more energized and purposeful interactions with the brand and its people.
– Sales, marketing, and advertising becomes more effective as they align more to the many outcomes that flow from the brand as it actively pursues its purpose.
Why forego the beneficial energy that a purpose can bring to your company or brand? Why miss this opportunity to matter more to your employees? Why not use a purpose to elevate your brand above the competition by focusing on meaningful outcomes?
Purposeless is no longer an option for brands seeking to thrive and prevail.
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Emotive Brand is a brand strategy firm.