Leading with a Purpose

Margo Jay
6 min readMar 29, 2021

Our organizations have been asked to step up to the plate over and over again this year. In times of uncertainty, people look to entities they trust -whether those are people or brands or companies.

And, as brands, we’ve had to show our customers that their trust isn’t misplaced. We’ve been asked to show leadership in so many different areas this year: safety, health, community. The list goes on and on.

Most of us have met this challenge head-on. We’ve realized how important it is for us to show our customers how to get involved with their community or how they can be safe when they visit us in person.

Now, we’re needing to step up to the plate again to help our customers-and our team members-stay safe and healthy through what might be a long winter.

As we enter this moment, we need to think about leading with a purpose. What do we want to accomplish? What do we want our customers to take away from our leadership?

Why Leaders Must Have a Purpose

Our customers have looked to us for leadership precisely because they trust us. Our purpose gives us a goal or destination-or a framework to operate from and deliver to.

For some organizations, their purpose is profit and they work hard at simply marketing a purpose that may be seen as giving back.

Leading from a higher purpose, means there’s something deeper. There’s a raison d’etre that makes the company unique. Google and Apple are both profitable companies. But if profit was the purpose, then Google’s “don’t be evil” mantra wouldn’t have lasted as long as it did.

Google’s purpose is leveraging technology to make everyday tasks easier. Google’s search engine, their very first product, made searching the Internet better, easier, faster. Finding what you need to know-or want to know-is simpler when you use Google.

We can see that in more recent products, like the company’s foray into self-driving cars. How much better and easier would it be to hop in a car and let it drive itself? You could relax, read a book, look out the window at the scenery. Would there also be fewer traffic jams and accidents? Can self-driving cars make driving smarter, faster, easier, and greener?

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Margo Jay
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