Why Do You Need Purpose-Driven Leaders?
Purpose in the workplace drives performance in your teams.
Developing purpose-driven leaders at your company is not just a “nice-to-have.” It is a need-to-have. Many social scientists have observed a sort of “disengagement crisis” in the American workforce. According to a study by Gallup, 71% of employees are not engaged at work. This number is shocking and speaks to a larger problem at-hand: employees do not feel connected to their work.
Employee engagement is not just a buzzword used by HR professionals to communicate the importance of keeping team members productive and happy. An engaged workforce is critical to producing quality work and driving creativity and innovation in your teams. While many high-profile tech companies are lauded for the expansive array of perks employees receive, it’s not really the free food and generous PTO policies that are keeping employees happy at work – it’s the significant amount of purpose that is highlighted in the workplace.
Increase Employee Satisfaction
Purpose-driven leaders help increase employee satisfaction because they are able to communicate the importance of the work their teams are doing on a daily basis. This sense of purpose makes each task feel meaningful and helps every team member feel like a part of something bigger than themselves.
A simple formula of good pay plus nice people plus interesting work does not necessarily equal employee satisfaction – at least not in the long-term. In order for employees to see their full potential at a company, they might be asking themselves deeper questions like:
Does my work at this company represent the kind of person I am/want to be?
Do I deeply believe in the values this company stands for?
Is this the kind of contribution I want to make in the world?
Can I find fulfillment in the kind of work I will be doing at this company?
These questions are complex and deep-rooted in people’s deepest values and belief systems. Purpose-driven leaders understand that finding purpose in your work is complicated and does not have an easy solution. These leaders are dedicated to understanding their team on the deepest levels in order to help provide a work experience and environment that helps individuals meet their personal and professional goals.
Employees that feel like their work aligns with their values are more likely to be satisfied and happy in the workplace. Equipping leaders with the tools they need to make employees feel valued and important will lead to an increase in employee satisfaction at your company.
Drive Creativity and Innovation
Purpose-driven leaders are able to build the collaborative and safe environments necessary to drive creativity and innovation in the workplace. Employees are able to be their most creative when they feel like they are in an environment that encourages risk-taking. If a manager expects perfection, employees will not breed innovative ideas. Their fear of failing in the workplace is a result of a manager who values perfect, mediocre work over flawed, imaginative work.
Purpose-driven leaders understand that big problems and worthy causes – the ones that drive big companies – require unique solutions. Their deep commitment to the purpose they have defined as crucial to their companies and work plays a large part in their understanding that creative solutions are necessary in order to maintain a competitive advantage.
A genuine belief that your company is tackling some of the world’s largest problems can be daunting, but it can also be inspiring. For example, if your company defines its purpose as “making healthy and nutritious food more accessible and affordable,” your work is never done. This problem doesn’t need a simple, one-step solution. This company should be driven by the seemingly never-ending line of important work that needs to happen in order to make healthy food accessible to all communities.
Purpose-driven leaders are able to communicate the importance of their company’s purpose and motivate employees to be creative and innovative in order to solve some of the most prevalent and widespread problems in the world. When employees are happy and satisfied with their work, they are more likely to come up with ideas and feel motivated to go the extra mile.
Improve Your Bottom Line
Gallup estimates that disengaged employees contribute to $300 billion in lost productivity annually. This might sound unbelievable, but you should not underestimate the impact of an employee that just doesn’t care.
Have you ever wondered how many of your employees are disengaged? Or how much more productive your workforce could be if they deeply believed in the work they were doing?
It’s often hard to visualize the cost of not engaging your workforce, but there’s no doubt that leaders that are able to inspire and motivate your employees will have an incredible impact on the amount of sales that are made and work that is being done.
Purpose-driven leaders are not just the most well-liked managers, they are the highest performing employees that you will probably consider promoting and grooming for executive leadership. Over 50% of people leave their jobs because of a bad manager, but purpose-driven leaders treat their teams in a way that will result in an increase in retention, improved employee satisfaction, and an innovative work environment.
Employees that are happy and inspired are more likely to be creative and hard-working. These attributes will significantly impact the output of your teams and the growth of your company.
Purpose-Driven Leaders are Mission Critical
Purpose-driven leaders are a necessity at your company. In our recent survey of over 20 HR professionals, we asked them what advice they would give their CEO. One response in particular stood out: “Great talent is the only long term sustainable competitive advantage that exists.” Investing in your employees and developing purpose-driven leaders at your company is critical to the success of your business. You can’t wait another day and wonder if your workforce is truly finding meaning in the work they are doing.
Purpose-driven leaders will not only help you engage your workforce and drive innovation and creativity, but they will guide your company in its long-term vision to make a meaningful contribution to the world.