Today’s business environment is characterized by accelerated change and increasing uncertainty. Digitalization, changing consumer expectations, volatile political and economic landscapes and declining levels of trust are reshaping our world. These forces challenge leaders and organizations to be agile, innovative and ethical. There is a growing expectation for companies to measure success beyond financial results: companies are expected to make a positive contribution to society’s problems.

Against this backdrop leaders are rethinking and redefining how they create long term value. They are developing measures of success that go beyond short-term shareholder value to encompass a much broader perspective of stakeholder value.

The new role that organizations are expected to play in society calls for a strong sense of purpose and values based leadership 

Leading the way with Purpose: using the greater good to drive performance

The new role that organizations are expected to play in society calls for a strong sense of purpose and values based leadership. Those companies that are purpose driven demonstrate, time and time again, that this leads to improved performance and long-term success.

Philips is an organisation that has long understood the importance of purpose, its been a driving force for the company since the beginning. In fact it’s probably a key factor in their enduring success and their long standing relationships with customers, consumers, NGO’s and Governments.

Last month, at the General Assembly of the UN, Philips provided us with another excellent example of the power of purpose, when Philips announced that they will launch a series of global programs to enable and strengthen access to healthcare around the world and improve outcomes for all. A bold ambition driven by a strong purpose: to improve lives.

The true value of values

Winning the trust of your stakeholders and the commitment of an entire organisation to achieve these ambitious goals requires leaders with the ability to communicate vision and values and connect diverse stakeholders. Over the years, in our work training and coaching hundreds of managers at organizations from f.e. Unilever or Barry Callebaut, we have noticed an explosion of interest in purpose-driven leadership. Executives tell us that it plays an important role in accelerating their personal growth and deepening their impact both as an individual and as an organization.

We have noticed an explosion of interest in purpose-driven leadership 

When organisations are guided by strong values and authentic leadership they can adapt quickly to changes and challenges in the environment because they always have these strong core values and a sense of purpose to guide them in their decision making and business priorities. That’s why these are the organizations that thrive in times of uncertainty and change.

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