The greatest frustration of most leaders is to get your people to go the direction you’ve set.

To bring strategy and execution together, the two things overlooked are Purpose and Personality. Sure there’s more to business than that, however, these are the two rarely spoken about missing pieces.

Let’s start with Purpose.

I know, your business exists to make money. But scratch a little deeper. What’s its purpose beyond dollars.

I’m sure you have goals and strategies to get to your financial goals, but there’s a problem. Your customers and staff couldn’t care less about your goal to make money, and they care even less about an Operation Manager wanting to cut cuts and be more efficient, or for you to re-engineer your sales distribution channels.

Customers and staff are looking for something simpler and deeper.

For the time being let’s focus on customers. (We can deal with staff another day).

Customers want to know what’s in it for them. You and I both know that. And the thing the customer is looking for has nothing to do with your goals.

You also know they don’t just want a cheap price. If they did, you’d be using only the cheapest suppliers and be selling things out of low rent bland spaces strewn with cardboard boxes and hand written price tags. Customers want more.

So you have to figure out what place you have in their minds. What do you mean to them?

Every company has to mean something to it’s consumers. Every company has to have a purpose for the customer and staff that a means something to them. Their purpose for choosing you has nothing to do with your goals.

Here’s what a good purpose looks like.

Sometimes it’s price – Aldi ~ Quality at incredibly low prices

Sometimes it’s grand – Google ~ make information freely available to anyone with an Internet connection.

Sometimes it’s unexpected but makes sense – Hyatt ~ offering guests opportunities to broaden their horizons and rejuvenate.

Even smaller companies like my own can use them e.g. Service Integrity ~ Revealing the truth to execute strategy.

The second part, personality was dealt with in the previous post – Episode #13.