About four years ago, we decided we needed to get down to business defining why we’ve been able to garner some of the best talent in the industry and what it is that draws us together to work towards our common goal.
We’re big on Verne Harnish’s Mastering the Rockefeller Habits – and he describes this as the “Purpose” or the “Why”. Other companies call it their mission statement.
Mike Klein, my Co-CEO, pointed out Simon Sinek’s TEDx talk “Start with Why.” You can see it here. It’s powerful; I suggest you watch it. Our entire management team watched it and decided we were going to focus on defining our purpose and how we were going to assure we live by it.
We recognized that our employees really care about taking great care of clients. It seemed to be ingrained in everyone who works here. Client Focus is one of our core values, but still, we didn’t feel like we clearly captured why.
So we hired a business coach to interview our employees in confidence to learn some of their intrinsic motivations regarding their work at Online Tech. Interviews lasted up to an hour each, during which time the coach asked a series of questions he would use as conversation starters.
We took all the words, removed the fillers, and put them into a word cloud. That’s what you see in the picture above. The bigger the words, the more people said it. Fortunately it was very consistent with our core values of:
- Win-Win or No Deal
- Great Ideas Win
- Credibility and Accountability
- Client Focus
After about 20 hours of meetings over a 9-month period, we came up with the following purpose statement. We carefully crafted every word and worked really hard to keep it under 10 words.
Exceptional People Delivering Exceptional Experiences
Our level of care for our clients is unique.
Every day our employees are empowered to create exceptional experiences our clients can’t wait to share with others.
That focus attracts some of the hardest working, most thoughtful people as our employees, which in-turn improves our client’s experiences.
This win-win relationship between our employees and our clients create exceptional experiences for our owners, vendors and the entire Online Tech community.
It becomes something everyone wants to join.
And that’s how we came up with our why. In a future post I’ll explain some of the tools we use to assure we live by it and how, 4 years later, it’s a critical part of our explosive growth and a fantastic culture.