A company with a well-defined purpose and passionate employees who share it can unleash a massive boost of employee enthusiasm that can only be born when purpose and passion align. Unfortunately, this is a ‘free’ resource that most companies of all sizes are not tapping into nearly enough.
Let me share with you an increasingly occurring situation.
Wayne is among a growing number of talented individuals who have struggled with finding a role in their organisations in which their purpose and passions could flourish. Moving up the career ladder he eventually felt so disconnected with his profession he wondered what it was that even attracted him to it in the first place.
At this current phase in his career he was spending more and more time with politics and less on building meaningful relationships, making a difference and achieving any kind of success or results.
“I began to wonder why I turned up; each day I felt a little more of my energy and enthusiasm disappear. I was also getting more frustrated at the lack of authenticity within the company, what it said it stood for and what it asked for / rewarded were very different. At this point I decided enough was enough and I needed to take action. The very first action being to take time for myself and consider my future, so I hired my coach.”
Reflection and Awareness
This phase of reflection helped Wayne to see just how inauthentic he too had become, slowly his values and strengths and passion had been eroded, and he had to accept that he’d let that happen. However the coaching also helped him to reconnect to what was really important, both in terms of why he’d initially chosen that profession and also what was important to him now. This discovery process enabled him to connect not only to his purpose but back to his real self.
Then came the review of his current job and company. Armed with what he knew about himself and what he wanted for his future, he could evaluate his next steps and his relationship with the company. In Wayne’s case he decided that the company was no longer the right environment for him, realising he’d be asked to compromise again in order to fit in and get on, yet this time he’d be doing it consciously which was even worse.
Interestingly when he went to resign the organisation came back with a salary increase, he promptly refused, but they said they really valued him, and so offered an even bigger financial package. “At that point I had an insightful discussion with my boss and explained just how much either he or the company didn’t understand me.”
Many talented people we speak with mention that within their career, it is core that they can express themselves and have a sense of fulfillment. That success without this is no longer real success. Of course, they have mortgages to pay and people to feed, at least one being themselves. Yet they very often take the most courageous decision of all, push through the fear and pursue this intrinsic desire for a life and career filled with meaning and purpose.
Wayne moved on to a role and company that played to his strengths, shared his values, and their corporate mission was aligned with his purpose.
“I’m invigorated; what I achieve in a day is phenomenal compared to before. Yes there are tough days, and occasionally I still ask myself why I’m doing this, but the difference is now an answer comes back, and it gets me going again.”
Many large organisations do take the time to define a corporate mission that underpins their vision of the future. These short sentences can be used as a guiding compass and a decision-making tool for everyone’s actions. This enables those that are considering joining to decide if it aligns with who they are too.
If these sentences are a shell then the worst that happens is they recruit someone who buy’s the shell and within six months finds it’s hollow. Then it becomes an expensive business as they move on, or even more costly for everyone if they decide to stay.
Mission, values, vision and purpose are valuable leverage points for both an organisation – whatever the size and the individual. When they coincide the payback for all is enormous.
As Wayne’s story shows there are some things you can’t buy.
Questions for reflection
As the leader – is it clear for the team what the purpose is, the vision for the future and how each person contributes? What’s the level of engagement, passion and inspiration?
As an individual – do you know what your passion is, what inspires you? Are you clear on the team or company’s purpose and vision and know where you align with this?
If you’re not sure of the answers, or don’t like the answers then consider taking action and getting back on track quickly. And if you’d like our help for yourself or in making your team or company more profitable through purpose get in touch.