What You Stand For Is Critical

by Edward Henkler on July 22, 2014

I just finished reading an excellent book by Roy Spence, “It’s Not What You Sell, It’s What You Stand For.” Roy notes, “At the end of the day, it’s been much more rewarding to work with clients that are trying to make a difference than it is to work with clients who are just trying to sell stuff.”

His book is driven by three interdependent components:

  • Building an organization that truly makes a difference in the marketplace;
  • Becoming a leader of great purpose; and
  • Bringing your purpose to life so that your constituents know exactly what you stand for.

Roy Spence - It's Not What You Sell, It's What You Stand For

He goes on to say that purpose turns employees into evangelists, which turns strangers into customers, and customers into fans.  It’s absolutely contagious.  While I’m a huge fan of Matthew Kelly’s “The Dream Manager”, I also absolutely agree with Roy.  You could be the best boss in the world and take phenomenal care of your employees but, if the company’s work doesn’t resonate with your employees, then it’s still just a job.  A wonderful boss and a wonderful workplace….yes to both but perhaps you still won’t even admit to neighbors where you work.  There are mundane jobs which still must be done but you’ll never hit the trifecta with them.  If you work in one of those mundane industries, keep in mind that a great boss and a great work setting will still put you ahead of most of your competition.

Roy tells a great story of his high school football team.  Coach Wood had the most wins in the country, not because he had the best players but because his core purpose was to transform young kids into responsible adults faster than anyone thought possible.  He was in the “personal responsibility” business way before his time and his players responded with extraordinary effort.

What does your company stand for and how can you be better at it than anyone else?

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