Why Having A Sense of Purpose Matters So Much For Startups

What is the purpose of the business you run? Do you plan to change the world? Disrupt a rigid eco-system? Create a new rulebook for the industry? Merely earn some profits?

Right now, you’re probably feeling puzzled. You want to achieve everything above or more. But your vision is not clear…

Putting your business purpose in words is a tough task, but important nonetheless. Why? Because a well-defined sense of purpose will mobilize your start-up in a way that pursuing profits alone never could.

Allow us to illustrate this further with some numbers.

Why Purpose Driven Companies Prosper

You know that on a personal level having a “sense of purpose” results in psychological comfort. You feel more content with your life and experience more positive emotions.
But there’s more to that.
According to a recent study published in the Journal of Research in Personality, having a greater sense of purpose in life impacts your personal wealth. The more purpose-driven survey participants have reported making an extra $20,857 (£16,170) over the course of nine years, compared to the lesser determined peers.
Deloitte Core Beliefs & Culture Survey conducted in 2014 develops this point even further. Companies focusing on purpose over profits have higher business confidence and drive more investment.
People working for purpose-driven brands:
  • Feel that their organisation will grow this year (82%)
  • Feel optimistic about their future prospects and stay ahead of industry disruptions (83%)
  • Feel optimistic about their company's ability to outperform the competition in the long run (79%).
For startups, having a confident and motivated team is the backbone of success.


Here’s another kicker – companies with a greater sense of purpose can transform and innovate better according to Ernst & Young data.
Some 53% of executives admit that a strong sense of purpose makes their company more successful with innovation and transformational efforts, compared with 31% of those still trying to articulate their sense of purpose and 19% of startups that haven’t looked into the matter at all.
Revenue growth is directly correlated with the sense of purpose too.
As the chart shows, 42% of companies that lack a well-defined understanding of their purpose tend to experience revenue growth in the short term. Whereas those, who place the purpose on top of their agenda tend to financially strive and succeed. 
Having a clear business purpose and mission is what makes a company successful in the long run.

The question is - how do you articulate the mission of your start-up?

What does sense of purpose mean for businesses?

Nikos Mourkogiannis, author of the best-selling book 'Purpose: The Starting Point of Great Companies'states that successful businesses adopt one of the following approaches to defining their purpose:

  • Discovery – you constantly seek for new ways to do things and aim to introduce new revolutionary solutions to the market. Examples: IBM, Intel, Sony.
  • Excellence – your quality standards are absolute. You strive to deliver the best or deliver nothing at all. Examples: Apple, BMW, Warren Buffett.
  • Altruism – you always go over and beyond to deliver impeccable service and wow your customers with extra delights. Examples: Wal-Mart, HP, Sam Walton (“anything to help the customer”)
  • Heroism – you aim to change the world, dominate the industry and achieve spectacular growth. Examples: Tesla, Microsoft, Ford.
In short, your company purpose is how you do your job and why you do it in the first place.7
Take a look at the following mission statements:


“To organize the world’s information and make it universally accessible and useful” – Google.

“Make transportation as reliable as running water, everywhere, for everyone.” - Uber.


These are powerful statements that sum up the purpose of these companies and lay down their branding basics.

They precisely state how they lead their business and why they chose to do it in the first place.

Yet, finding your sense of purpose as a company leader and chief motivator isn't easy.
At DisPRuptive we always conduct a series of detailed interviews and brainstorming sessions with our clients to dig deep inside your drivers and transform the magic that makes you tick into actual words. The words you will use to motivate your team spread your influence and drive your brand to success.