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How To Define The Purpose Of Your Company With These Strategic Questions


With the rise of the pandemic, sociopolitical, and climatic issues, and the various challenges they bring, companies are fast becoming more and more purposeful. With so many world problems, companies that set out to fix them will thrive in the 21st century. The world audience is navigating towards companies that integrate a sense of purpose into their day-to-day operations.

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When you observe the world’s leading companies, you will see that some are intrinsically purposeful while others become more purposeful daily. With the presence of these world problems, ranging from world hunger to insecurity and what-have-you, customers’ expectations increase.

Companies are no longer just there to make a profit but to be a contributor to making the world a better place. A company without a sense of purpose will faze out. Imagine having to build and lead a company with no sense of purpose, it can be tormenting.

To put this clear: company purpose is different from company goals, missions and vision. However, your purpose can define your mission and vision. When a company is without purpose, it is like a man without a soul.  In this article, I am going to examine a few questions you must ask yourself to build a purposeful company.

Q1: Why Was Our Company Formed?

This question can pop up other questions that deserve deep reflection. The question of why – not how – was our company formed? can pop other mind-blowing questions too, such as What are the most timeless aspects of our origin story? How can we carry our brand’s relevance into the future? What does our brand stand for? What are our core values? What do we stand against–and/or what are we fighting for, trying to prevent, or striving to lessen? These questions can help you redefine the direction of your company.

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Q2: How Can We Differentiate Ourselves From Our Competitors?

The question of bringing new opportunities that are not available to the public should be answered if you are going to give a soul to your company. Questions such as Where are we making the most difference? How can we synergize with stakeholders and communities to boost our impact? What emotional aspect do we want the audience or marketplace to correlate with our company? Do you want your company to be associated with innovation, satisfaction, novelty, integrity, etc? Or the company is known to be passionate about world issues like hunger, civil rights, climate, etc.?

Q3: What Specific World Problem Is Our Company Out To Solve?

As a business leader, if you are going to give your company a sense of purpose, you must pick a set of world problems and create solutions for them. Therefore, relevant questions such as What specific needs does our company meet? What significant problems does it solve–and are they true to our company? How can we more effectively and wholly live our purpose each day as a company? What should our brand be known for in five, ten, twenty years?

Q4: Which Best Practices Do We Adopt When Engaging Our Employees, Stakeholders, Customers And Supply Chain Partners?

This question is very crucial when you are trying to live out your company’s purpose daily. You should ask yourself if you are truly building a company with the “We”, ” Our”, and “Us” culture? Is the company inspiring all departments, brands, LOBs, and regions, co-owned and co-created by everyone internally and used as a benchmark for all decisions and actions? Is there a sense of collaboration across the board? Is there a sense of collective decision felt by all? Is there a section of the company that is underutilised, alienated or overlooked? These questions can help you in creating a central platform that brings all quarters together with a singular sense of purpose.

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Nnaemeka is an academic scholar with a degree in History and International Studies from the University of Nigeria, Nsukka. He is also a creative writer, content creator, storyteller, and social analyst.

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