Organizations, leaders, and brands with a real and genuine purpose are primed to deliver success not only in the marketplace but also where it really counts—in the lives of others.
— Karin Volo, Huffington Post
A challenging part of leading for the common good is figuring out exactly what that looks like in any particular situation. One helpful strategy is to reflect on the organization’s mission and purpose.
Huffington Post recently published an article called Why Becoming Purpose Driven is the Path to Success in the 21st Century. The author described several benefits that come with a clear understanding of purpose. When everyone is on board with an organization’s mission, it translates into higher levels of confidence and engagement among employees. It encourages working together and promotes collaboration rather than self-focused competition.
When individuals and organizations understand their purpose, they are also able to be more innovative by changing the “rules” that aren’t core to the mission. For example, many leaders in higher ed are taking a serious look at open-source course materials. They’re asking how we can change the rules that say students have to spend money on expensive textbooks. How can we collaborate, share knowledge, and use technology in new ways?
In my field of training and development, we traditionally had a rule that said the best way to deliver training was in person. Over the past decade we’ve been learning to break that rule. We’re asking if there are better ways to reach learners with the information they need, when they need it.
How can focusing on your organizational mission help you to lead for the common good?
Dee Anne Bonebright