Team alignment, motivation, and clear direction are just some of the benefits a meaningful purpose can yield.
Nearly every business wants to provide outstanding customer service. But many people don't realize that a great customer experience isn't just about guest visits and sales interactions.
The organizations with the best experience seem to have one thing in common. They all clearly understand who they are as a business and what they want to be in their communities or industries. That purpose becomes a guiding light in everything they do.
A meaningful purpose doesn't just give you marketing fodder for your company website. It allows you to build the foundation necessary to create legendary guest experiences. Read on for five core benefits of having a meaningful purpose.
No. 1: Team Alignment
A clear purpose helps to align the efforts and actions of everyone in the company toward a common goal. When your team members understand the company's purpose, they are more likely to work together effectively because they have a sense of shared direction.
Clear direction is critical when you want to help guide decision-making when you're not around. When faced with difficult choices or trade-offs, a strong purpose can provide a framework for making decisions that align with the company's values and long-term goals.
No. 2: Personalized Coaching
Team members who feel like they're growing in their roles and essential to a company's success are more likely to invest the time necessary to deliver on your service and experience promises. Pouring energy into helping your team members grow professionally or personally can never be undervalued.
A shared purpose makes delivering coaching and feedback easier and more consistent. If your purpose is to be the safest space for families to come together, you can tie individual roles and responsibilities to achieving that purpose.
In targeted coaching sessions, you can help staff learn to measure their actions against the company's purpose and values to decide if they're on the right track. And, if you want to be there less than 100 hours a week, this coaching builds the autonomy necessary for you to let go (and get some sleep!)
No. 3: Autonomy
Autonomy, the degree to which a team member has the freedom and flexibility to make decisions about their work, set their own goals, and take ownership of their role, is an often overlooked piece of the guest experience puzzle.
When team members have some control over their work, they tend to feel happier with their jobs, more invested in their roles, and more committed to achieving their goals.
Autonomy is essential for creativity and innovation, allowing individuals to experiment with new ideas and approaches without fearing failure or retribution. This freedom can lead to new and innovative solutions to problems, benefiting your guests and your business.
A word of caution, though: autonomy is not the same as complete independence or freedom from responsibility. If you don't want rogue team members, you'll still have to establish boundaries and best practices to help them manage certain situations, and team members will still be accountable for the results of their work. Autonomy should be balanced with clear expectations, feedback, and support to ensure that your team can succeed and achieve their goals.
No. 4: Motivation
Motivating staff continues to be a struggle for businesses in nearly every industry. But having a meaningful purpose (or a noble cause) can provide a sense of motivation and inspiration for your team. Studies time and again show that when employees feel that they are working towards something they deem meaningful, they are more likely to be engaged and committed to their work.
This kind of motivation is evident in the work of companies like Chewy and Chick-Fil-A. Sure, it's easy to think they're just selling pet treats and fried chicken, but the difference in how staff feel about their jobs is clear. In the case of Chewy, staff rally around a passion for pets and (therefore) their owners. Team members have the autonomy to use their creativity to solve problems and create memorable experiences.
In the case of Chick-Fil-A, the staff comes together with a shared set of values, often faith-based, with high standards they hire around and coach to. They know who they are, and their values are consistently applied in every recruiting, onboarding, and training session.
No. 5: Differentiation
There's a reason we talk about the Zappos, Chewy's, and Chick-Fil-A's in one way, and the less-than-stellar companies another. A well-defined purpose can help a company stand out in a crowded market in the right ways. It can help you differentiate from your competitors by communicating what makes you unique and why your community should do business with you.
Overall, having a clear and meaningful purpose can create a sense of direction, alignment, and motivation within a company, leading to better performance, stronger guest loyalty, and a more positive impact in your community.
To help you learn how to develop your core purpose and overhaul your guest experience, we'd love for you to join us for our next Experience Academy workshop in Houston, April 18-20, 2023. Apply today and attend with a CenterEdge scholarship.