How Important Is Working with a Purpose-Driven Company?
Have you ever talked to your parents or grandparents about how work was when they were younger? In those days, people chose a job because it paid well and offered stability and benefits. And they stayed there for their entire career. Today, though, employees want more: They want purpose. Finding a sense of purpose in one’s work has never been more important, especially to the younger generation. Generation Z has a strong desire to contribute to the greater good, making meaningful connections with their work and aligning with companies that share their values. They want to work for purpose-driven companies.
What exactly is a purpose-driven company? It is one that is committed to giving back, either in contributions or through its actions. It may even have an established corporate social responsibility (CSR) program in place.
Before you join a company that fits with your values and core beliefs, you have to find it! Thankfully, many such companies are proud to share their commitment to their employees, the environment, and our communities, so finding them is a lot easier.
First, though, you need to determine your personal requirements for a happy work life.
Find Purpose in Your Work
If finding a purpose to your work is important to you—whether you’re in your 20s, 60s, or somewhere in between—it’s imperative that you start with an internal reflection to determine your own core values. What issues light your fire? You could be a social activist, politically minded, all about the environment, or committed to being a voice for those who can’t speak for themselves. Regardless, knowing what is important to you helps you get closer to finding a company culture that speaks to you.
Aligning with a purpose-driven company means that you want to have an impact and be given leeway to make a difference. Perhaps the company that best fits with you directly contributes to causes you care about. While that could certainly be a nonprofit, it doesn’t have to be. It could be a corporation that prioritizes social responsibility. Companies of all sizes and types can have a commitment to CSR.
Another question to ask yourself is: How important is it to you to leave a legacy in your work? Do you want to positively contribute to the greater good through the environment or community? Purpose-driven work transcends personal gain and resonates with a broader vision of making the world a better place.
Light Your Own Fire
You can create opportunities to work and live with purpose nearly anywhere when you are in the mindset to do so. Even if you find yourself in a company that doesn’t prioritize social responsibility, that doesn’t mean you’re powerless. You can be a beacon for change and light your own fire for others to follow. By transforming everyday obstacles into opportunities for growing and learning, you’ll overcome those challenges and make a more significant impact in your chosen field. You may also inspire those around you to do the same.
Speaking of coworkers, cultivating meaningful relationships is a surefire way to ensure a purpose-driven life. Collaborations and partnerships expand your footprint and enable you to share your passion with others. Just because no one is talking about purpose doesn’t mean they’re not thinking it. It never hurts to have the conversation. Plus, you may find a mentor whose guidance on your journey will be invaluable.
Identify Purpose-Driven Companies
To find the best fit with your goals in work and life, you’ll need to do some research about potential companies to join. Look on the company’s website and social channels to learn about its mission statement, vision, and core values. Do all of those statements resonate with you and your beliefs? A company that has a commitment to giving back won’t hide it; it will be right on the website and emanate through the corporate message. You might also see that the company is engaged in community service, or it might comment about social initiatives such as LGBTQ rights, racial equality, or issues related to homelessness, hunger, animals, and children.
If you can’t ascertain a purpose, that’s likely an indicator that this company is not a fit and you may choose to look elsewhere.
Extend Your Search
Suppose you’re unclear where to even start searching for a purpose-driven organization. What should you do then? You probably have a sense for what you’re passionate about supporting—especially since you addressed that earlier when you completed your reflection to identify your values and desires with work. Instead of looking directly for a company, you can go to the charities and organizations you support. Look at their donor lists; companies that are driven to give back will be supporters. Attend events and meet the people who are there. Where do they work? It’s likely you’ll find some synergy in your conversations.
LinkedIn is always an excellent tool in your job search, and searching for a purpose-driven company is another way to use this powerful site and search engine. Look for people who are doing what you do or want to do and review their profiles. Where do they work? Do they volunteer or belong to organizations? This avenue can steer you toward companies you may not have otherwise considered or even known about.
Be Purposeful and Create Your Happiness
Finding and landing a position at a purpose-driven company is easy when you know what you’re looking for. The great thing is that these companies are looking for you too because they seek to create a culture of purpose and change. When you mesh with a company—and it meshes with you—you’ll find a place that makes your heart happy and supports your desire to be engaged and give back. Simply put, everyone wins.
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