The Challenges With Creating Purpose at Work

Purpose is something that both managers and employees know is important and will continue to be an essential part of employee motivation.

When we think about purpose and work, we often hear about it in two ways:

Communicating how your company is making a difference outward to your customers

Understanding and expressing why your company exists, beyond to make money, so your customers can connect to you and your brand.

Communicating how your company is making a difference inward to your employees

Understanding and expressing how your employees are improving the world in their work.

The challenge with thinking of purpose only as the big picture is that it limits the power purpose has to motivate us. If you are not someone who is completely energized by the big picture, then grand ideals likely don’t motivate you. If you are a business that is just trying to provide a product or service and not sure of your role in the big picture, then it is out of your reach. If the inspiration of having a job that is improving the big picture stops being enough to get you out of bed in the morning, then you are out of luck.

Focusing on only the big picture isn’t enough to sustain people’s motivation. Inspiration and fulfillment fades. Organizations need to inspire and sustain people’s internal sense of direction and meaning if they want to tap into people’s motivation for the long run.

To learn more about the challenge with creating purpose at work, please enjoy this 4 minute video.

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