It’s an interesting dynamic when you bring a shared vision or purpose into a room of people. All of a sudden the walls of difference we generally put up between us start to fall; and we look past our individual needs and wants in light of the shared outcome.
Last week held our first stop of an event tour called SEVENTEENx in Adelaide in partnership with Teaspoons of Change. The overall premise is the bring conversation of the UN’s sustainable development goals to the front, and make them apart of what it takes to simply do good business.
The vibe in the room was a collective feel of anticipation of what is possible and what is to come next. It was almost like an excitement filled the air of the shift that is currently underway in business to do things the right way and the RIGHT WAY. The audience of roughly 70 people was made up of a pretty event mix of business owners, university students and corporate employees or academics. So with such a diverse group of individuals, it was promising to see everyone in the same conversation, all generally agreeing to not just act but to believe in the SDGs
The takeaway for us in business from this example is what happens within your team when you give them a culture and a vision they can all believe in and be a part of making it happen. With a shared culture we have something that brings us together as a team in the workplace. And a culture with purpose or impact embedded goes even further. Taking the SDGs, or any other giving/impact platform on board for your team provides an unmatched connection by your team to your company.
Some tips to help build a culture of purpose and impact into your business.
1. Find a platform or model that gives you guidance and reference for your company impact. The Global Goals are a great place to start; aligned with giving platforms like Buy1 Give1 or Pledge 1% gives you a great framework to plan and actually delivery your purpose.
2. Get your team involved in building your culture and core values. The reality is that we are more engaged when we are a part of the creation. Use your best assets; your people; to build your core values, culture and overall purpose or impact mission and they will drive it for you, because they own it.
3. Tell your customers. Be proud of your new found culture and purpose. Engage your brand and your community with your vision; and bring them into the conversation. Thank your community for being a part of the delivery of your impact. As long as you’re genuine and have integrity; be vocal. People want to do business with you because you’re making a difference; so let them know.
4. Deliver the impact you promise. This is what separates you from greenwashing. Have integrity and delivery what you set out to. Even when it’s a tight month; or times are tough; go out and give; build your impact. Your team will relish.
5. Measure your giving. Bring measurable KPIs and metrics into your culture so you can engage your team the SMART way with clear indicators of what is being delivered and the vision being achieved. These should be as important as your “performance metrics”.
Culture is such a powerful tool to build your brand and your people. It breaks down barriers, and gives us a shared focus, that as a group is unstoppable. And by adding some sort of social or sustainable impact to your culture is even more powerful. So grab your team, a big whiteboard, some pizzas and if it permits; some beer n wine (or coffee) and get creating. A Shared Purpose is how we create an amazing future for our business and beyond.