More speed? More meaning!

People are beings who are looking for meaning, as was fittingly established by the neurologist Viktor Frankl in the middle of the last century. While the “hamster wheel” seems to be turning ever faster in business and society (according to the sociologist Hartmut Rosa), and agility and New Work are extolled as answers to the VUCA world with its disruptive changes, the question as to the meaning of it all often remains unanswered. But how can meaning be created, and why is it important for you and your organisation?

Meaning makes a difference.

In short: meaning is created when values become reality. For example, if an activity fulfils a purpose that is considered to be valuable. Or if the activity as such is of value – because you enjoy doing something, regardless of whether it serves a particular purpose. An organisation creates meaning if it consistently thinks, acts and leads in a way that is clearly focused on values. Meaning makes a positive difference – for customers, for employees, and for society as a whole. What makes your organisation stand out?

Products? Values!

People don’t buy products and services, they buy values. For example, they don’t buy a means of transport, they buy freedom. They don’t buy a car or a bike; they buy status (high-performance sports cars!) or a good ecological conscience (bike!). And in making their purchase decisions, they are increasingly taking the values that a company credibly represents along its entire value creation chain into account. Consumers are asking themselves whether a product or service makes sense for them. If you can answer this question in a way that creates meaning, you can turn casual buyers into faithful followers. What connects people to your company and your brand?

Workforce? Community!

Employees also ask themselves whether a company creates meaning. And it is becoming increasingly rare that this question can be answered purely with money or status. Rather it requires an organisational and leadership culture that acts in a meaningful way (how do I want to work?) and that serves a business purpose that makes sense (what do I want to work for?). A community with shared values that works together to create value. That provides clear orientation and gives people the scope to develop. That enhances motivation and encourages people to identify with their company. And that makes a company almost irresistible as an employer. What makes your organisation attractive?

Disruption? Crisis of meaning!

Preferences in values can change fundamentally; new technologies may bring better solutions that make more sense. When this happens, we use the term disruption. This can lead to a fundamental crisis of meaning for a company. Everything is called into question: business purpose, portfolio, business model, fundamental existence. Horse-drawn carriages and their providers have to a large extent disappeared from the market and the carriage has been replaced by the car. (Candles, on the other hand, have survived all disruption by finding a new niche, having undergone a change of value and meaning, from a source of light to mood-setter.)

Make a difference.

To ensure that change doesn’t lead to crisis, an organisation needs to ask itself if it still makes sense: Are our values still relevant? Does our organisational culture still create value? If you don’t change the way you think and act, there will be no change in your results. In the best case, this will only lead to better horse-drawn carriages. Yet just because something seemed to make sense yesterday doesn’t mean that this is the case today. Sustainable value creation therefore requires approaches that continuously develop in a way that makes sense. There is no other way of securing the sustainable success and future viability of an organisation. You can’t climb mountains in business attire. Creating a difference in your organisational culture will make a difference to your results. Make a difference with us: START MAKING SENSE!