The Accidental Purpose
The vast majority of college graduates find work in fields that aren’t related to their degrees. In fact, it’s estimated that only 27% of grads land jobs closely related to their major. This doesn’t surprise me. I suppose there are those who know what they want to be when they grow up, but I would guess most of us struggle a bit.
It’s very difficult to know at 18 what you’re going to do with your life. I describe the early years of my career as “finding my way.” I didn’t have the life experience or perspective to know what was important to me in terms of a work culture or company values. I was more focused on doing a job than understanding my talents and what I could contribute to an organization. I lacked direction.
Until. I was working in a customer service department when my mentor took me under his wing. He saw my strength characters and shared considerations for a professional path. I began to see possibilities. It wasn't until later, during outplacement work that I facilitated for others, when I finally began to connect the dots. The vision of my why became certain.
To know your why or your purpose, you have to understand your talents, passion and values. I have a serving heart and a competitive nature. Pull that together and my why becomes helping companies and individuals realize their potential by matching a person's talents with the right role in the right culture. This positions everyone for success.
What reinforces my why is when I can take the guidance I received along the way and pay it forward. It energizes me to help sales teams within an organization find their individual strengths and learn how to collectively work together for maximum impact. Watching teams drive forward, not just for the sake of reaching their numbers, but to build confidence and motivate, is the most rewarding part of my why!
We all want a purpose that makes us jump out of bed in the morning. The magic is when that passion aligns with the values of the organization we work for. Culture is at its best, productivity is up and everybody wins – including the customer.
What's your why?