It can be difficult to imagine what a good social purpose statement looks like, so here are a few examples to get you started - and what we like about them. And remember, getting a Purpose isn't like flipping a switch; it is a journey with aspirational intent.
Maple Leaf Foods (meat and protein producer): To raise the good in food
Assessment: I really like this one – especially when you look at their underlying narrative, explaining what each word means to them and how each is actionable. They really are putting a stake in the ground by stating this Purpose as why they exist and have even been moving towards sustainable proteins (insects – yes, really!).
Hootsuite (social media management): To empower organizations to turn messages into meaningful relationships.
Assessment: I like it – this is world changing; words can be shallow, but meaningful relationships are what break down barriers and connect us all. They aim to make something special of the messages put out into the world.
Return-It (recycling): To foster a world where nothing is waste.
Assessment: I love this one – and they did a whole ideation session with external stakeholders to help come up with it (I was there!). It is ambitious, where what we usually consider waste becomes a resource / asset not a problem to try to bury.
LGM Financial (automotive financial products): To Accelerate Responsible Mobility for All
Assessment: Love this one, too. It audaciously extends beyond their specific products to the industry they serve and puts improving the whole industry - for all - in their sights. We can do better in our getting around; LGM aims to find a way.
Hemlock Printers (commercial printing): To create connections, build community, and inspire actions that safeguard the health of the world’s forests.
Assessment: This one is such a great combination of social (first half) and environmental (second half) aims, and it makes clear that progressing on an aspirational Purpose such as 'safeguarding the health of the world’s forests' is a combined effort and the quest brings us together.
I'd love to help your company uncover a Purpose that aligns what your business does best with the societal issue it can optimally impact upon.