Books for the purpose-minded executive.
People With Purpose: How Great Leaders Use Purpose to Build Thriving Organizations by Kevin Murray. Kogan Page, 2017.
A leader who rallies an organization around a shared purpose will create more engaged employees, more committed customers and more supportive stakeholders. Click To Tweet That is the big takeaway from Kevin Murray, former director of communications for British Airways and former director of corporate affairs at the U.K. Atomic Energy Authority. Mr. Murphy also discusses how purpose can be harnessed across various organizational dimensions—financial, psychological and cultural. But how can leaders translate purpose into an effective strategy and tangible results? This is where People With Purpose gets more interesting. Mr. Murray spoke with 30 CEOs—including Dame Louise Makin, CEO of BTG PLC and Euan Munro, CEO of Aviva Investors—about “how they have used a purpose framework as a North Star for long- and short-term decision-making.”
Digging Deeper: How Purpose-Driven Enterprises Create Real Value by Dietmar Sternad, James J. Kennelly and Finbarr Bradley. Routledge, 2017.
In a 2017 interview with The Irish Times, Finbarr Bradley said, “Leaders with integrity truly care about society, so they try to do the right thing even at some cost to their company.” This is, in essence, the core message in Digging Deeper, which Mr. Bradley co-authored. The authors argue that companies need to establish “real value”—which balances traditional business needs and the human needs of employees to create long-term results. Companies can do this, according to Digging Deeper, by focusing on six principles, including leadership responsibility, learning community, building lasting relationships and recognizing limitations.
Find Your Why: A Practical Guide for Discovering Purpose for You and Your Team by Simon Sinek, David Mead and Peter Docker. Portfolio, 2017.
Simon Sinek’s well-known “Golden Circle” model lays out three key concepts for effective leadership: what, how and why. If his TED Talk is the “what” and his 2009 book Start With Why is the “why,” then this new book is the “how.”
Find Your Why provides the tools for individuals and teams to discover their purpose, which Mr. Sinek and his co-authors said needs to be more than “Do what you love.” Step-by-step guides will lead you and your team to the “why” that can drive profit. “For those who hold a leadership position, creating an environment in which the people in your charge feel like they are a part of something bigger than themselves is your responsibility as a leader,” Mr. Sinek says.