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Why Purpose at Work Matters

The question, Do you find purpose in your work?, is written on a pad of paper with a pen to the left side of the paper.

Imagine stepping into an office where every task you undertake is backed by a profound sense of meaning. In this fast-paced world of careers and employment, finding a sense of purpose may seem like an elusive task amidst other, seemingly more critical pursuits but finding purpose in the workplace is a catalyst for growth that cannot be ignored. Purpose, often hailed for its ability to guide and empower us on our professional journey, holds the key to unlocking unparalleled success and fulfillment in the workplace.

What does having purpose at work look like?

At its most simplistic level, to have a sense of purpose at work is to feel that the tasks you undertake make an impact.

Rather than simply clocking in and out, we want to feel passionate and be a part of something that contributes to the greater good; individuals, organizations, and our communities in general.

According to a study by Deloitte, employees who feel a strong sense of purpose are more likely to be engaged, satisfied, and driven to excel in the workplace. Employees who find meaning in their work and feel like their contributions matter, are also more likely to have higher levels of commitment and well-being, reduced stress, and increased job satisfaction. At an organizational level, businesses that incorporate meaningful purpose into their strategies will reap the benefits of higher employee engagement and loyalty, as colleagues unite around a shared goal.

So how can we foster a sense of purpose?

There’s a number of ways leaders can nurture purpose and invest in their most important resource: people.
  • Promoting ownership: Encouraging employees to reflect and share their values, strengths, and passions to help them align with and guide the company’s values and overall vision.

  • Championing empowerment: Actively showing the impact that employee roles and responsibilities have on the company’s goals and culture.

  • Supporting professional growth: Offering opportunities to improve and enhance skills, talents, and professional networks can be highly motivating and lead to increased satisfaction.

  • Advocating for options: Promoting autonomy and flexibility in how and where people work can open doors to creativity and engagement as well as increase retention.

The ripple effect purpose can have will reach well beyond the individual to resonate throughout the organization as a whole.
  • Creating a compelling story: Developing a strong, clear, and realistic mission helps employees feel connected and in touch with their role and purpose at work.

  • Inspiring open communication: Listening and implementing feedback lets employees know that what they have to say matters about where the organization is headed, helping to increase investment in the company and loyalty.

  • Motivating rewards and recognition: Acknowledging employees who go above and beyond while publicly appreciating their dedication and the positive impact they've made imbues purpose.

  • Reinforcing work-life equilibrium: Striving and creating a balanced work environment that respects employees' personal lives stimulates healthy workplaces that help to retain employees who are passionate about what they do.

As we navigate our careers, purpose consistently emerges as a guiding light, illuminating the way to personal and professional fulfillment.

Purpose transforms jobs into callings and tasks into contributions.

It’s also the compass that leads individuals and organizations to greatness, fostering a sense of unity and accomplishment that goes well beyond the bottom line.


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