Business Purpose Checklist Item 1

by Mar 30, 2020Branding, Business Planning

Business Purpose

Checklist Item 1

I am crystal clear on why I am in business and what I want the business to achieve for me and my family
Level 1: Profitable

Typically level 1 items are the basics needed by every business to survive and be profitable

Why this item is important

If you are not clear on the self motivating conviction that drives everything you do in business, over and above making a profit, you will most likely struggle with the many curve balls and low moments that you will inevitably experience over your businesses lifetime. Having a purpose inspires you to give your best.

A recent study  from Korn Ferry showed that companies with teams focused on their organisation’s purpose had annual growth rates nearly three times the annual rate for their entire industry. It can be used to build morale and gain support and understanding inside and outside of your business. It can be easily used as a benchmark for decision-making, drives your company forward, and helps you attract likeminded staff and loyal customers. 

Check your progress

To tick off this checklist item:

  • you are familiar with the concept of “purpose” – or “your why”
  • you are able to clearly and succinctly explain to your prospects, your family and other stakeholders why you started your business and what you want your business to achieve for yourself and your family.

Not there yet?

Start by familiarising yourself with concept of purpose and the many benefits purpose driven companies experience. Then begin to explore and define yours.

There are a number of exercises you might be able to find on Google.

I recommend using the ‘laddering’ technique.

This exercise uses a technique adapted from clinical psychology where you are interviewed by a second party. The interviewer takes you through a series of systematic probes to move you from articulating relevant attributes, to objective benefits, to more subjective benefits and ultimately, to the deep meanings or values that underpin your brand.

The conversation goes as follows:

  • The process begins with the interviewer simply asking you what you think your purpose is or why you wanted to start the business you’re currently running.
  • It’s very common for your first answer to talk about what you do as if this was your Purpose – it’s not. However this is a good starting point to the conversation, so begin with something tangible i.e. what do you do or want to do!
  • With each answer, they get you to drill down further and further by asking you why each answer is important. Think about the objective benefits here.
  • From there, they should ask what would happen because of what you do – this is where you need to think more deeply about the subjective benefits and values you hold dear. These are your perspectives (even prejudices) that come from within.
  • To get the best out of you, your questioner needs to be very persistent. Gentle and consistent pressure will help you to dig deep and find the nub of why you do what you do at a very emotional level. Let your guard down and simply speak from the heart.
  • It’s highly likely that you will have an “AHA moment” five or six questions into the process.
  • Record your conversation so that you can review and write down your consecutive answers as well as your ‘AHA’ moment. as a written reminder of your conversation.   Don’t give up until both of you think you have an ‘AHA!’ moment.

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