That’s the question every business owner/leadership team must answer.
And the answer must be completely idealistic.
In my experience, every business that does not contribute in some way to a better world will, and should, go out of business.
Stakeholders in every organization want to know that at the heart of their participation beats something grand, and glorious, and worthy of investing their lives in.
The early church knew this worthy purpose and willingly gave their lives to it.
They knew that they were cooperating with Jesus to establish his kingdom on earth – as it is in heaven.
That purpose has been lost, forgotten.
Over the centuries – religion has persuaded us that our purpose is going to heaven. But going to heaven was never part of Jesus’ prayer – or his purpose. (For more on this read N.T. Wright’s, When God Became King: The Forgotten Story of The Gospels.)
Do we exist to “go to heaven?” (If you’re tempted to answer “yes” …try finding that expressed in the gospels.)
Or, do we exist to declare by every aspect of our lives that the kingdom has come on earth as it is in heaven?
To be sure, that’s what Jesus prayed would happen, and that’s the story that is conveyed in the gospels.
So – why does your business exist?
Here’s an exercise to help you uncover the answer:
Keep asking the question “why?” “Why do we do that?” “Why is that important?” “Why?” until you arrive at the most lofty reason for existing.
By the way, if the answer is some form of “…so that the owners can comfortably retire in Florida.”
…then you’ve just arrived at a purpose equivalent to “so that the owners can go to heaven – and to hell with everybody else.”
a good, thought provoking read, Mitch!
Thank you, Sandi, for reading and commenting – and for the encouragement.
Mitch, a good question but I think it not “Why we exist” but what are our responsibilities as leaders? Being a leader is a tremendous responsibility and if your thought is not first around the responsibility you have towards the people you lead, you have already missed the boat. For way too many “leaders” today, the answer is mostly self-centered and about hanging on to their job. So, it is ok to squeeze the most out of your people and then discard of them. For a leader it is important to develop a vision, align the people and execute towards it to enhance the chance for success. You owe it to the people you hire or lead. For a business owner, this is usually a bit easier to do because there is a passion involved that you may not see from someone who was placed into a leadership position. At least that is my position. There was a great article in Fortune magazine called “Elite Teams get the job done”. While it was published in 1996, I think it is a perfect blueprint of how to build effective and performing teams. Unfortunately, we have learned too much about how to lead and manage widgets rather than people.
Mitch don’t ever stop what you doing!
I am inspired by each of your blogs. Not only for my future business but for bringing
heaven to earth.
Words cannot explain how much.
Thanks so much for your comment. Reading it, I am filled with courage and resolve. Thank you.
As I understand it, we exist to praise and worship God, and secondly to lead others to Him. We glorify God by the way we live, no? Preach the gospel and when necessary use words, is often attributed to St.Francis. Once we know Jesus as Lord and Savior, we are in heaven, on the road to heaven? Trials and tribulation may come. They are meant to grow and strengthen us until the day we will enter heaven to be with Jesus forever.
My business exists to empower small business owners, families, companies and their employees. How, you may ask? And i would respond, by revolutionizing and industry that for too long has served those who could afford it. Equal justice under the law can only be equal, when ACCESS to equal justice is as equal.
Imagine picking up the phone to consult with an attorney without having to worry about the cost.
Peace of mind.
Hey I am glad I found your blog. It is so crucial to live with a mindset of legacy instead of escapism. Thanks for the inspiration. Ill be coming back for sure!