Today’s employees are searching for more than just a paycheck; they want to feel like their work has meaning and that they can make an impact in the world with their talents. Since employees who feel purposeful about their work tend to perform better, you might think that encouraging purpose would be easy. But it can be hard to find your own sense of purpose at work if you don’t already have it—and even harder to share it with your team. This guide will help you understand how to help your employees find purpose in their work, which will lead to better employee retention and increased productivity.
The first step in encouraging your employees to find meaning in their work is creating a sense of purpose yourself. Being clear about why you started your business is a great start. They also want to know what you hope to accomplish with company. This will help your employees discover why they came to work for you. These kind of big-picture conversations can be eye-opening for people who might not have considered whether or not their job matters beyond whatever dollar amount is on their paycheck at the end of each week.
To go deeper, check out this Forbes Article: The Power of Purpose
Leaders need to focus on helping their employees find purpose in their work. Purpose is the convergence of talent, meaning, contribution, and passion. Leaders must help them understand how these parts of their experience fit together and create a positive outcome for their careers. When an employee feels like they’re making a difference and contributing to a greater good—and has opportunities to do so—they feel fulfilled in their career. This directly correlates with performance (higher engagement), retention (lower turnover), safety/wellness, and productivity.
People need to feel like they’re not only contributing to a company’s success, but that their work matters. People who find purpose through meaning in their work tend to be more motivated, productive, and creative. All of these qualities are essential for success as a leader. Leaders can foster a sense of purpose by helping employees discover meaning in their work.
If you’re looking to find meaning in your work, focus on contribution. Leadership research suggests that engagement and motivation happen when we feel like our efforts are recognized and appreciated by others. The best way to engage employees is to give them meaningful opportunities that help their organization meet its goals. While purpose doesn’t have to be grandiose, it should be tied back to how employees can help others; how they can make a positive impact within their community or industry.
Many people are lucky enough to find their passion early in life, but not everyone is so fortunate. You may be feeling like you just don’t love your job and aren’t bringing meaning to what you do. Take some time to explore your personal interests outside of work. You might be surprised by how your professional path aligns with your personal passions. And even if it doesn’t—even if you discover that your passion is something completely different—it can help you reconnect with why you got into your field in the first place and begin to rediscover purpose. After all, our careers should always leave us with a sense of fulfillment at both an intellectual and an emotional level; if we’re not feeling either one, it might be time for a change.