Remind yourself and your team about why you are with the company. Companies go through changes and hire bright talent to maintain and pursue the purpose of the organization. The purpose of the organization is larger than any individual in the organization. Sometimes tough decisions must be made to maintain it. When you remember the big why, in puts the challenges of the organization into perspective.
Consider this quote made by Peter Drucker, Management Consultant, “The purpose of business is to supply goods and services to customers, rather than supply jobs to workers and managers, or dividends to stockholders.”
During the 60's, while my father was in college, he was a student leader of the student civil rights movement in Atlanta, GA. I once asked my Dad why he decided to get involved with the civil rights movement. After all, he was just a college student. I asked, “Why would you put yourself in harm's way?” He replied, “I did it so my children would not have to go through the same living conditions.”
Obviously the 60's were game changing times, however he did not have what one might think was a game changing purpose. He had a bigger, selfless purpose. It was a forward thinking, inner driven purpose. I once thought that gamechangers were all about what they do for themselves. I discovered its bigger than that.
It was not about him. It could easily have been just about his talents. Dad was an awesome singer and an inspiration to the students at the time, which is probably why he was elected as a leader of the student movement.
He used those talents for something bigger than himself. They contributed to a larger purpose. He had a big why. When you discover your big why, your purpose becomes larger than your challenges.
Recently, I was reading a story about JVC and the creation of the VHS VCR. For those of you who do not remember, VCR was the video cassette recorder. The video cassette was before the DVD. For you Gen Y readers, the DVD is the disc that was out right before Blue Ray. You know, it's the other disc option in the Redbox.
The original model of the VTR that was released was huge and expensive (more than $ 2,500 US), definitely not an affordable model for the typical family. Following this Sony released the smaller, less expensive model, Betamax player. The challenge there is that it only managed 1 hour of tape.
The team at JVC realized they had to stop thinking like engineers and what was technically possible, to thinking like a consumer and about what people wanted.
They had to refocus on the needs of those they were trying to serve, which needed a smaller, less expensive player, with a tape that went for 2 hours. Their dream was that each home had a video tape recorder and make life more enjoyable.
How did JVC, a minor of the industry at the time, take on the task to make that happen? They created a matrix of conditions that had to be met before the first VHS VCR would be produced. Those conditions included requirements that made it easy to use and connect with at home and also that it should be easy to manufacture. JVC was a smaller outfit and needed larger manufacturers to get involved to manage the demand. Wow, make it easy for the consumer to get it and use it, and make it easy for others to reproduce it.
This was all for the purpose to have a video cassette recorder in each home and make life more enjoyable. Larger purposes keep you focused on the bigger picture. If you want more performance from your team, remind them again about why the company is in existence. Remember, profit was not the original intent. It is a goal no doubt, but not the purpose.
According to Harvard business review, working for an organization that has meaningful work was the top motivation for employees. Remind your team about why they are there and the difference you all make.