How to Find Your Purpose

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The first step to gaining business clarity is to pinpoint your purpose - to identify the ‘why’ behind your business. Once you have done this, you will then be able to identify your mission (your ‘how’), before checking that your products and services (your ‘what’) are aligned with your purpose and mission.

Why is it important?

It is important to identify your purpose for two reasons: Your purpose is like your compass, and will guide you - and motivate you - throughout your entrepreneurial journey. It will give you a strong sense of why you started your business in the first place. It will also enable your customers to better understand you and your vision, and will help them form a more emotional attachment with your brand.

If you don’t work out why you are doing what you are doing, your values, and the products and services you create, will not match your purpose. Put another way, if you are not aware of your purpose, you won’t know how you should produce those particular goods or services, nor what they should be, in a way that authentically reflects your purpose and brand whilst meeting your customers’ needs.

Whilst every business is purpose-led, as founders, we aren’t always clear about what our purpose is. As a business support practitioner, I have noticed that many start-ups initially focus their attention on their end product or service - the actual solution that they want to provide their customers. They know exactly what product they want to make, or what service they want to provide, but they don’t know why they have created those particular products and services. I have also noticed that more established small business owners often lose their direction, and fall out of touch with their original reason for starting up. For those founders, when they revisit their purpose, and reflect on why they originally went into business, it is as if they “fall in love” with their business once again.

How do I find my purpose?

If you are struggling to find your purpose, ask yourself questions starting with ‘Why?’. For example: Why have you chosen to develop those particular products and services for your customers? Why do you feel they are needed? Why now? Why are you the best person to design and deliver those solutions to your customers? Why did you decide to start this particular venture? And why does your business excite you? If you want to keep things really simple, just ask your self ‘Why?’ repeatedly!

When working on identifying your purpose, it is also worth imagining your business in the future. What do you want to achieve in the long-term? How do you imagine your business in one year’s time, in 3 year’s time or in 10 years’ time, for example? What ambitious goals will you set yourself to realise your vision?

Once you have identified your purpose, refer to it in your marketing materials. You may not necessarily want to share publically your personal motivation for going into business but you should consider sharing your professional motivation with your audience. This will help them better understand why you are doing what you are doing, and why you are the most equipped and informed person to offer that particular solution.

To help you identify your purpose and reflect on your vision, work through these guiding questions.

Guiding questions

- What is your purpose? Why are you doing what you are doing?

- Why have you chosen to develop your particular products and services?

- What is your personal motivation for starting up?

- What is your professional motivation for starting up?

- What is your vision? How do you imagine your business in the future? What does it look like?

- What is your end-goal? What would you like to achieve with your business in the long-term?

If you would like to gain business clarity in a confidential, peer support group, reflect on your business progress and get unstuck, join me at our next Business Clarity Club™ meeting on Tuesday, 20 April from 10am until 12pm. To get your ticket, go to: