Some of the world’s most successful companies have organised themselves around the most important societal benefit of their specific products and services:
IKEA want to “create a better everyday life for the many” via “a wide range of well-designed, functional home furnishing at prices so low that as many people as possible will be able to afford them.”
Google have a mission “to organise the world’s information and make it universally accessible and useful.”
Toyota don’t simply design cars but “will lead the way to the future of mobility, enriching lives with the safest and most responsible ways of moving people.” This is a 100-year purpose.
Southwest Airlines don’t just fly planes; they ”connect people to what’s important in their lives through friendly, reliable and low-cost air travel.”
The first step is to create a Core Purpose, akin to those above, which links specific products and service skills to important human and societal benefits, but this is only the first step.
It is tangible, everyday behaviours that deliver the true value of a Core Purpose. Any worker in a Toyota factory is able to stop the entire production line to solve a problem with others. Southwest Airlines recruit their staff on the basis of their empathy and sense of humour. These signature actions and behaviours make these Core Purposes successful decade after decade.