Do something purposeful

Purposeful leadership motivates individuals, empowers teams to achieve their greatest potential, provides clarity to organisational priorities and goals and connects everyone to broader societal goals. Purposeful leadership starts with clarity about your own purpose, and that can be difficult to get clear (at least at first). Pan Pan (founder of Swiss advisory firm Pantera Ventures) suggests that leaders wanting to identity their true purpose, need to start by considering the end of their careers. Consider the “end game”, where do you personally hope to be and what does success look like to you? Think about career achievements, what do you hope to have accomplished? What kind of impact will you make? What legacy, however small, would you like to leave behind? Leadership coach and author Mitchell Simon explains that one important aspect of being purposeful in leadership is to continually seek out feedback. Enabling the leader to better reflect ifContinue Reading

The importance of innovation to help a firm stay ahead of its competitors is a regular topic for business and academic texts. Connecting innovation to purpose is about ensuring the magic of innovation is resonating deeply in the emotional drivers and values of staff responsible for ensuring its success. This is aligned to the question Simon Sinek asks when he says “Start with Why”. He writes about how leaders make the connection between an idea and what drives or motivates them (individual purpose). “Martin Luther King Jr., Steve Jobs, and the Wright Brothers had little in common, but they all started with WHY. They realized that people won’t truly buy into a product, service, movement, or idea until they understand the WHY behind it.“ Simon Sinek – Start With Why 2011 Innovation is the way that successful companies grow. Innovation is the way new products and services are identified, provenContinue Reading

Can you find your life’s purpose in nine boxes? McKinsey research has developed a really interesting analysis to better understand what uniquely motivates each of us, using a familiar nine box model. As you unpack the model you note there is an X/Y axis that looks at the influence of SELF/OTHERS and AGENCY/INTEGRATION on our purpose. The dynamic of the axis is to better understand the influences on our values. The horizontal axis represents the ‘target’ of our personal activities, the values that reflect who we are in our personal lives. The vertical axis represents the underlying ‘motives’ for our work activities, which as the authors state ranges “from our drive to expand our sense of self to our drive to cooperate and unite with the world around us. While each of us are individually aligned to a specific mix of values, McKinsey research has identified three value combinations thatContinue Reading

Identifying your genius is about understanding what makes you different or special. It is your personal and professional unique value proposition. It fits quite nicely with defining your purpose (there are numerous articles in HBR and various Journals on the topic of purpose). Purpose is about being really clear what drives you. Genius is about knowing your key strengths. This is the point to say that there are alternatives to the Genius model. CliftonStrengths created by Don Clifton (and sold by Gallup) is based on decades of research. It is often referred to as StrengthFinder which was the name of his very successful book. It breaks down into 4 domains and 34 dominant themes: Strategic Thinking – Analytical, Context, Futuristic, Ideation, Input, Intellection, Learner, Strategic Relationship Building – Adaptability, Connectedness, Developer, Empathy, Harmony, Included, Individualisation, Positivity, Relator Influencing – Activator, Command, Communication, Competition, Maximiser, Self-Assurance, Significance, Woo (winning others over)Continue Reading


Activate your purpose and generate a shared identity for your organisation and employees and you navigate the transition. Organise for the future Leaders are planning for a post pandemic future recognise that purpose can not be relegated to broad goals, high level intentions, or catchy slogans. Increasingly businesses as part of their social contract are expected to take lead in addressing how to create a more sustainable and equitable world. This sees business leaders taking on a renewed dedication to solving societal challenges and addressing broader human needs. Doing this requires the leader to have a clear and authentic purpose that guides their decisions and their overall strategy. Move from Why to How Setting your purpose into action connects your organisation’s core strengths and differentiation to the societal goals and progress that the organisation seeks to support. Having a meaningful purpose cultivates “a shared identity that informs how the companyContinue Reading

Technology is changing the meaning of work but Purpose, Potential and Perspective connect technology to humanity and shape the attributes of the Social Enterprise. This is all according to this years Human Capital Trends from Deloitte, which has been published annually for over a decade. The Deloitte Human Capital Trends Report is a weighty tome, (over 120 pages) and filled with rich insights that come from their consultants and partners all over the world. Accordingly my brief synopsis is just that – a touch on the key points that I observed while reading the report. If this interested you I would definitely suggest you read more in the full report (see link at bottom of the page). The article starts by reflecting on the fusion of technology and people into work and how that is continuing to shape the organisations. The authors begin that there are three bold shifts thatContinue Reading

McKinsey Purpose

“Creating strong links to an individual purpose benefits individuals and companies alike—and could be vital in managing the postpandemic uncertainties that lie ahead.” Igniting individual purpose in times of crisis, McKinsey Quarterly, 18th August 2020 It is widely recognised that companies around the world are extremely challenged facing the current crisis, so how important is it to be clear on purpose, of your company and of the individuals within the organisation. The authors explain that it may be a very important to have clarity of purpose. During times of crisis individual purpose can provide clarity of direction to individuals helping them address the challenges and potentially mitigate the risks and damaging effects of long term stress. “What is your company’s core reason for being, and where can you have a unique, positive impact on society? Now more than ever, you need good answers to these questions.” Purpose Shifting From WhyContinue Reading