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A Purpose-Driven Business in 5 Steps

1. Get the owners and directors on board

If one leads and others follow reluctantly, fundamental change will not happen. Change the articles of association to reflect that the business is now about benefiting all stakeholders - employees, suppliers, the local community and the world - through its care for the planet.

2. Embed purpose at all levels of the company

A purpose-driven company is like a stick of rock: cut ti at any point and you'll see the purpose written there. Over time, purpose will be communicated from the bottom up, not simply top down. Employees will have their own stories of what that means to them.

3. Give employees permission to challenge their leaders...

...if they feel that they have moved away from the purpose of the company. This happened at google last year when news surfaced that it was working with the US Department of Defence on drone software - 3,100 employees put their name to a letter to CEO Sundar Pichai.

4. Base hiring and promoting on values

At Toyota, employees have two annual assessments: one on their adherence to company values and the other on their performance for the year. Promotion decisions are based only on the values assessment.

5. Be transparent in your annual reports...

... in relation to the measurement of your values. If you aren't, then there's a danger that doubts may permeate throughout the business. Any doubts and distrust from consumers are instantly dissolved by complete transparency, which will be a test of whether your company really has purpose at it's heart.

From Forces for Good by Paul Hargreaves.

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