The other month I had the absolute pleasure of interviewing Lisa Earle McLeod, Author of “Selling with Noble Purpose”. Lisa is an expert in helping people find their true purpose at work. She’s a Harvard Business Review, Forbes, and LinkedIn Learning contributor and was recently named to Marshall Goldsmith’s 100 Coaches as one of the top thought leaders and coaches in the world.
She’s credited for these 3 questions she talked about on my LinkedIn LIVE. I don’t want you to have to hunt for them, so here ya go:
1. HOW DO YOU MAKE A DIFFERENCE?
2. HOW DO YOU DO IT DIFFERENTLY THAN ANYONE ELSE?
3. ON YOUR BEST DAY, WHAT DO YOU LOVE ABOUT YOUR JOB?
Finding purpose at work is about being connected to your work and enjoying it for a bigger purpose than just money. This isn’t to say that money doesn’t matter, it does, but it’s not what’s going to make you feel purposeful.
You may be thinking, “Rachel, how the hell do you expect me to make time to figure out my freaking purpose in my work, when what I really need is a job to pay the bills?!” I feel ya, I do. Those same 3 questions may be able to help you too.
Let’s dive in a little. Come with me and you’ll see a world of pure purposeful inspiration. (My Willy Wonka version ????????????)
My purpose rediscovered
But … something was missing, I could feel it in my stomach.
After getting my MBA at Texas McCombs School of Business and experiencing these great companies, I finally understood what my superpowers and strengths were…marketing, branding, communication…but the way I was using those skills everyday wasn’t filling my soul. That’s how I knew something was missing and that my purpose wasn’t being fulfilled. Because every new opportunity would be super exciting, and then I’d get burned out and want something else.
I asked myself, how could I make a difference? How do I do it differently than others?
It took therapy, coaching, deep conversations with mentors, and a big leap of faith with my husband Joshua B. Lee to make the path change into entrepreneurship. Did I know I would be pursuing my purpose by diving into entrepreneurship? No. But I knew it was uncomfortable. It was exciting. It was a chance to make a bigger impact and support people in finding their voice. AND it took more courage than anything I had done before and the most use of my superpowers to excel at.
I was asking myself Lisa’s questions without even knowing it! You’ll know you’re on the right path when you’re serving others and using your superpowers everyday.
People say that passion and purpose are interchangeable, they’re not!
I’m telling y’all, Lisa had some gold nuggets to share in our LinkedIn LIVE, and she brought up the subject of passion and purpose. She blew me away when she said,
“People say that passion and purpose are interchangeable, they’re not, passion waxes and wanes, its personal, purpose is steadfast, and on the days when you don’t have passion, but you have purpose, you’ll still be able to show up.”
I think this really speaks to her 3rd question about what you love about your job on the best day. There’s a big misunderstanding that finding your purpose means you’re going to love everyday of your job.
That is NOT the case. Whether you run your own business or work for someone else, there are going to be tasks you don’t like and hard days no matter what you do for a living…THAT’S LIFE. But our goal is to have a role where almost each day is filled with something you love and gives you positive energy.
And on those tough days, we think about how we’re making a difference. About the people we support. About the lives we impact…and we feel good about what we’re doing.
What about purpose during a recession?
None of this feels relevant when you’re looking for a job, are in a job that you want to transition out of, or maybe you can’t quite leave a job due to the recession, but there’s still an answer for you.
I asked Lisa what she thinks, and her response was simple, helpful, and solution based.
“When we need money, we get afraid, so what ‘purpose’ can do is it can give you a sense of self that makes you less susceptible to the conditions around you. Lean into you making a difference for people no matter what you’re doing.”
Look for purpose in what you’re already doing. Line cook? You’re not just cooking. You’re creating memories and experiences for people to connect. Mechanic? You’re not just fixing automobiles. You’re creating a safer world for people to experience life. Not getting promoted and feel devalued? Think about your customers and your direct team, and how you can show up for them. At home mom who’s trying to get back to work? Think about the energy and skills you’re giving to a new life! There’s no bigger way to serve than with our families and communities.
Profit isn’t a purpose
Simon Sinek said,” Profit isn’t a purpose, it’s a result. To have purpose means the things we do are of real value to others.”
It’s true and it’s hard. It’s challenging to not think about money when you’re trying to pay bills, nurturing team with no budget, etc. But really this is playing victim to your circumstance, and we’re here on this planet for more than profit and money. Once you get over that mindset obstacle as a business leader, so many magical things happen that end up producing more revenue.
Lisa cited a couple of things from research that I found insightful:
???? Organizations who have a purpose bigger than money, who truly want to improve life for their customers, outperform the market by 300%.
???? Organizations who have a purpose bigger than money are more innovative.
As a business owner, I’m constantly thinking about our profit, don’t get me wrong, but I’ve learned to not take on clients just because they pay me. Whenever we’ve made decisions purely for profit, it’s ended up being more of a pain for us. When something isn’t aligned to your purpose, you feel it in your gut. Trust that feeling!
The more value we bring to the world as StandOut Authority and focus on our mission of humanizing marketing online, the more our business grows, and opportunity comes organically.
You matter and so does your purpose, no matter what stage of life you’re in.
Chadwick Boseman said in his commencement address at Howard University,
“Purpose is an essential element of you. It is the reason you are on the planet at this particular time in history. Your very existence is wrapped up in the things you are here to fulfill. Whatever you choose for a career path, remember the struggles along the way are only meant to shape you for your purpose.”
I didn’t really feel purposeful until I was about 33 years old. I wouldn’t change any of it. Every experience I learned more about myself, my superpowers and the purpose I want to have in my short time on this planet. Wherever you are today, keep going. Be a learn it all and lean into your strengths. Trust those feelings deep down when you’re calm and listen to yourself!
In conclusion, revisit these 3 powerful questions from Lisa McLeod.
Start by sitting down to answer them, next layout how you want to communicate and implement your answers into your business and career journey, and then keep on revisiting these questions as you evolve.
???? HOW DO YOU MAKE A DIFFERENCE?
???? HOW DO YOU DO IT DIFFERENTLY THAN ANYONE ELSE?
???? ON YOUR BEST DAY, WHAT DO YOU LOVE ABOUT YOUR JOB?
Do you know someone who might be interested in this newsletter? Share it with them.
Discover your purpose at your job at this month’s live event!
We’re partnering with BlueJeans by Verizon to host a LIVE event on Wednesday, April 19th, 2023, at 10amCST and finding your purpose is key piece of the puzzle. We’ll be talking about employee advocacy and how personal branding is the best way to advocacy in your company. You’ll learn…
???? What a personal brand is, and how it’s different than a company brand
???? How employee advocacy and engagement are changing and why personal branding is your missing piece
???? How to use personal branding in your company to create employee AND customer advocates
There’s a spot with your name on it, and we can’t wait to see you there!