In a previous post I introduced the 5 Key Principles of Growing Sustainable Teams. Today, I wanted to go into more depth on the first principle – having clearly defined common goals for your business and a ‘why’ statement.
So let’s start with the importance of a ‘why’ statement – why does your business need a why? It has to do with employee engagement. A survey done by Corporate Leadership Council found that when a team is engaged employees worked 57% harder, average revenue growth went up by 20%, and net profit was increased. Having a common goal, and a ‘why’ statement (or a statement of the essence of the business) are what help form the basis of company culture – great company culture equals increased team engagement.
What happens when you don’t get company culture right? You see a decrease in staff performance, unhealthy habits and attitudes develop which in turn affect the level of customer service the business offers to its clients. Ultimately the businesses’ growth is stunted by its own people.
One of the most important things you can do as the founder of your business, is to develop the company culture, and this can be done with your team. It doesn’t have to get too technical, but having a ‘why’ statement that resonates with you and your team is a great start at inspiring the engagement of the leaders within your business. Simon Sinek has a simple but powerful model for inspirational leadership — starting with a golden circle and the question “Why?”. Why inspire the leaders in your business? The same survey from the Corporate Leadership Council found that the single most effective factor in driving engagement of a team was its leaders.
How does having common business goals fit into all this? Very simply, it unites your team. As a team, map out the company’s annual goals (either calendar or financial) and make it juicy. Use words like build, launch or create. With the team working together to achieve a common goal, engagement goes up and you have a cohesive company culture.