Purpose, Direction and Clarity

Unless you’ve been living under a rock for the past few months, you’ll recognise that, we are going through time of profound – of disruptive – change, in all sorts of contexts and for all sorts of reasons. And let’s face it, during times of change we have a natural inclination, initially at least, to panic as we go through natural fight-or-flight responses to what’s going on around us.
For those involved in business of almost any sort it can feel as though we’re entirely at the mercy of forces beyond our control – ships tossed on stormy seas to sink or float depending on the skill and tenacity of their crew.
Whether you’re the captain or the crew of that ship, here are three things that will be critical to your surviving and thriving in times of change.

Purpose

It’s all too easy to focus on the waves and lose heart. Whatever your circumstance, it’s important to stay focused on your purpose… perhaps even more than your goals. Why? Because your goals have a habit of changing as our priorities or the external environment change.
Our purpose, though, is likely to remain more constant , especially in times of change. What we aim for may alter as our life and business priorities alter: our deep-rooted purpose for existence – like our values – is likely to remain more constant.
So…what IS your purpose? What is driving you to stay afloat and sail on when others are manning the lifeboats and abandoning ship?
Establishing your PURPOSE, I’d venture to suggest, defining your reason WHY is a more critical factor that your goals in keeping you forward focused, with your hand to the ship’s wheel, steering a steady course forward.

Direction

Are you moving towards your goals? You may have had to readjust your sails to get there, but… are you still moving forward, with purpose, towards your goals?
Again in times of profound change it’s tempting to focus on how the choppy waters around us might drag us to our doom, rather than determinedly steering a course through those waves.
Understand also that sometimes, the priority is to focus on remaining afloat and intact, not on moving forward. Pause and get your bearings, check that those travelling with you are OK before boldly sailing on.

Clarity

Clarity around goals, clarity around strategy and governance and clarity around values… and above all around purpose and direction
Why is this important? Because change often leads to panic, and when people panic they look for points of certainty in an uncertain world. It’s up to leaders to give this clarity: this is who we are. This is what we stand for. In a changing world our values remain the same. Our direction and purpose remain the same.

How are you communicating with clarity within YOUR business?

(from my article originally posted on Linked In)

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