Our Creative Director, Clare Solomon, shares her thoughts on sport, her TV viewing habits and how purpose contributes to organisational culture…
I don’t know about you but I was glued to the TV watching the Tokyo Olympics. And I admit to wiping away tears of national pride seeing Team GB athletes on the podium. So why are my emotions so stirred up, when for the rest of year, I can take or leave sport? I’m really only interested if I’m invested in the outcome and feel part of something. For a few short weeks, I became part of the GB Tribe.
At Tribe we believe it’s all about having a shared common purpose, being part of a collective ambition.
With the Olympics, we share a common drive for our national athletes to be the best in the world. We share in the awe and amazement of their super-human qualities and we feel proud of our country’s achievements when we succeed and there’s mutual disappointment when we don’t.
A single purpose unites us and brings us together. At Tribe we help to make organisations perform at their best. We bring an organisation’s people together and help them unite behind a shared purpose. It’s a great way to create improved business results across the board.
As humans, we naturally gravitate to groups where we feel mutually accepted and supported, and where we have each other’s backs. Belonging to a Tribe is a powerful and supportive place for action. It’s what we constantly strive to offer our people and clients.
Our purpose is to ‘Make a difference globally, through a unique combination of art and science, to create cultures of together’. Our purpose unites and drives us. It contributes to our organisational culture and contributes to positive wellbeing. We are enormously proud that because of the work we do with our clients, lives have been saved, incidents minimised and workplaces have become healthier, happier and more productive.
Mike Bridge, a Lead Consultant at Tribe has worked on developing vision and purpose for complex organisations. He says, “In leadership, ‘pathfinding’ is a core concept. Put plainly, if you don’t know what you want, how will you ever realise it?”
“Of course, the detail is important,” he continues. “Often in the shared endeavours that any organisation undertakes, a simple vision is not enough. So, for example, the idea of being the best at something means little if you don’t know how or why.”
These ideas are key to understanding the importance of sharing a clear purpose that everyone can relate to and it must tally with the values held by everyone involved – your workforce, clients, suppliers – in order to be successful.
It’s essential that you have the right people with the right mix of skills and expertise. A set of common attitudes, values and beliefs make the magic happen. When highly capable people work together in a collaborative context, they inspire each other to be more creative, more productive and ultimately more successful as a team than they would be as a collection of individuals.
And likewise, behind every successful athlete at the Olympics, is a team of people striving to win that medal and they’re all experts in their field.
Mike says, “Good purpose allows scope for growth and the nurturing of ever higher standards. At Tribe, our purpose talks about ‘creating cultures of together’. The personal and collective effort of our team focuses on this and it’s informed by a set of values built on care and respect.”
Here are five things to consider when developing your purpose:
Mike finishes by saying, “Some organisations have a rich picture of their values and what they wish to achieve; but when you use this to articulate a purpose that everyone can share, you move from just ‘what you want to achieve’ to ‘why you want to achieve it’ and this is what motivates people. And if people are motivated, they are more likely to be willing to change their behaviour.”
He says, “Having a shared purpose means your goal is transformational and not just transactional.”
Look out for a new podcast we’ll share later this month on organisational purpose… and if you’d like to discuss organisational purpose and how it plays a part in culture change, please get in touch with Briony.