ChapterPDF Available

Abstract and Figures

Examples of successful purpose-driven organizations show that corporate and personal purposes both play a crucial role in building high levels of unity, which arises from a genuine connection between the individual and the organization. Built upon recent research on plural identity and authenticity at work, we analyze the essence of this connection along with the processes that ensure it remains vibrant over time. A two-sided view of purpose is developed, suggesting the harmonization of personal and organizational purposes across two basic dimensions: purpose fluidity and purpose synergy. The first is related to the exchange of meaningful representations between personal and organizational purposes. The second relates to the way personal and organizational purposes partly or fully integrate with each other.
Content may be subject to copyright.
© e Author(s) 2019
C. Rey et al. (eds.), Purpose-driven Organizations,
Harmonization ofPersonal
andOrganizational Purpose
CarlosRey andIvanMalbašić
Like most companies, Unilever has lived under a set of corporate values that have
been the mainstay of the organization for decades. In 2014, inspired by these
principles, the company launched a program called “Brand Purpose” with the
intent of transmitting the corporate purpose across all the brands. In the same year,
the company started another program called “Personal Purpose” in which it
encouraged the employees, all over the world, to nd their own meaning in the
work they did.
Today, more than half of the Unilever brands have implemented Brand Purpose
and more than 30,000 employees have participated in the personal purpose
program. e internal results of the company have indicated that those brands in
which purpose was implemented grew twice as fast as those which did not. And
the employees who implemented their personal purpose had less burnout, greater
productivity, and more innovation.
As we have seen at Unilever and many other companies, evidence from the
eld shows that purpose is being infused increasingly at both the corporate
and the individual levels. Behind this practice is the idea of connecting
individual purpose to that of the organization—what we refer to in this book
C. Rey (*)
Universitat Internacional de Catalunya,
Barcelona, Spain
I. Malbašić
Faculty of Organization and Informatics, University of Zagreb, Zagreb, Croatia
as unity—making its way into companies in what clearly seems to be a con-
stant upward trend. In this chapter, we are going to see the essence of this
connection and consider its fundamental nature, along with the processes that
ensure it remains vibrant over time.Built upon recent research on plural iden-
tity and authenticity at work, a two-sided view of purpose is developed, sug-
gesting the harmonization of personal and organizational purposes across two
basic dimensions: purpose uidity and purpose synergy. e rst is related to
the exchange of meaningful representations between personal and organiza-
tional purposes. e second relates to the way personal and organizational
purposes partly or fully integrate with each other.
Connecting theTwo Sides ofPurpose
Scholars typically refer to purpose from a perspective that moves from the
organization to the individual, and so organizations typically dene a purpose,
then communicate it to their employees to oer a sense of purpose in their
work. With this approach, employees need to incorporate the purpose of the
organization into their own viewpoint in order to give higher meaning to
their eorts. Consequently, individuals see their work as more than just a
simple task, understanding it as something that contributes signicantly to a
higher cause. To the extent that employees internalize the organizational pur-
pose, it aords them an opportunity to transcend the task themselves, giving
them a more meaningful understanding of their work. In this regard, the
organizations ultimate purpose “provides” a sense of purpose to its employees.
We can see this, for example, in the anecdote about the well-known NASA
janitor who said, “I’m not mopping oors, I’m putting a man on the moon.1
e study of this case and others investigates how leaders and their rhetoric
motivate employees to internalize an organization’s purpose. Like this study,
much of the traditional research around purpose over recent decades has been
based on this notion that purpose ows from the organization to the individual.
However, there is another side of purpose, an equally important and
impactful side, that has been much less explored in management literature. It
is the perspective that argues purpose must also be created and moved “from
the individual to the organization.” In this perspective, individuals derive a
sense of meaning in their work from their personal purpose. And this plays a
crucial role in the development of meaning because one’s own purpose is an
enormous source of motivation. It endows any task with deeper meaning,
while reinforcing the individual’s value system. When individuals approach
their work from personal purpose, their aspirations are encouraged, and they
C. Rey and I. Malbašić
become more energized in their current roles.2 Personal purpose “empowers
individuals with timeless strength in the midst of change.3 More than merely
fullling a task or doing a job, employees feel they are “being themselves at
work,” incorporating into the organization their unique purpose in life.
Some may think that this is attainable only for those in high positions or in
vocational professions, but it is not. e work of ISS Facility Services in fos-
tering purpose development in their employees, for instance, oers convinc-
ing examples of how one can create a higher sense of purpose even for
mundane work. is is the case of the ISS cleaning professional, who works
in a Næstved Municipality school in Denmark. She reects upon her passion
for serving others through her statement: “By keeping the school clean, I help
the students focus on learning and developing their talents—while I do the
same in my job every day.” Or consider a general worker in charge of cleaning
and changing the bed linen at the Tzu Chi Hospital in Taiwan who expressed
his work as: “Helping patients on the way to recovery with a clean sheet.
ese examples challenge the understanding that some tasks have less per-
sonal meaning than the work found in professions such as medicine or educa-
tion,4 and indicate that nding meaning at work is not a matter of the kind of
work you do but, rather, of the kind of person you want to be.
Such examples of purpose at work, seen in the employees referred to above,
can be as powerful and meaningful as “putting a man on the moon” was for
the NASA janitor. By connecting the personal purpose with work, people nd
a much greater understanding of the transcendence of their eorts, and more
importantly, reinterpret those eorts over time.
e combination of these two notions of purpose—“from organization to
individual” and “from individual to organization”—oers a more comprehen-
sive view of the full potential of purpose in organizations. is duality of
purpose not only suggests that a company “inspire” the individual, but also
that a company “is inspired” by the personal purpose of each of its employees.
Indeed, the purpose of the organization can provide guidance for each indi-
vidual, but it should not replace the experience of every employee to discover
his or her personal purpose at work.
is is consistent with research that has “demystied charismatic/transfor-
mational leadership” by demonstrating that, in purpose-driven organizations,
individuals connect their work not only to the collective purpose, but also to
their own personal purpose.5 is can also be seen in the research regarding
plural work identity harmonization.6 When harmonizing purpose, individu-
als connect the corporate purpose with their personal purpose, nding plural
sources of meaning and a sense of purpose in their daily work. Following this
framework (see Table2.1), harmonization enhances the understanding of
2 Harmonization ofPersonal andOrganizational Purpose
how personal and organizational purposes support each other by dynamically
exchanging meaning (purpose uidity) as well as intersecting it to enrich each
other (purpose synergy). is requires overcoming the “myth of two separate
worlds” in which work identities are completely disconnected from non-work
identities.7 In the two-sided notion of purpose, individuals authentically
receive meaning from the purpose of the organization and the organization
authentically receives meaning from the purpose of each employee. It is related
to what some call the “ideological currency” that enhances the psychological
contract between the employee and the organization.8
Purpose uidity explains how individuals and organizations exchange mean-
ingful representations of purpose at work, enhancing the sense of purpose
when owing dynamically between personal and organizational purposes. In
other words, uidity is not just using one representation of purpose (personal
or organizational), but combining both at the same time, owing from the
personal to the organizational and vice versa, as is shown in Fig.2.1. Fluidity
then is based on what an organizations purpose means to the individual as
well as what the individual’s purpose means to the organization.
Fluidity is a powerful source of meaning and personal ourishing. It occurs
when employees see and experience that contributing to the corporate pur-
pose helps them to develop their personal purpose in life. Following the previ-
ous example, uidity can be illustrated by such examples as “helping to put a
Table 2.1 Harmonizing purpose in organizations
harmonization Description Examples
Fluidity Reinforcement between
personal and organizational
and purpose
•Providing employees with
representations of impact to the
organization and its beneficiaries
•Helping employees reflect on their
purposeat work
•Acknowledging the purpose of
each employee
Synergy Intersection between personal
and organizational purpose
•Hiring for fitting into the
organizational purpose
•Discovering purpose that already
exists in organizational members
•Designing career paths around the
connection between personal and
organizational purpose
C. Rey and I. Malbašić
man on the moon reinforces my personalpurpose of making an impact on
society.” Of course, purpose uidity does not come by simply elaborating
creative axioms, but from these connections becoming profoundly ingrained
in the minds and hearts of individuals.
We have seen many practices that foster purpose uidity. is is the case,
for example, of Novo Nordisk, a company that makes medicines for diabetics,
and requires that all new employees spend a day with a diabetes patient.9 It is
also the case for ISS Facility Services, where top managers spend one day a
year performing frontline positions, such as cleaning or maintenance, in the
premises of their clients. ese practices are a source of what some call “a
beneciary contact,”10 helping individuals to experience and gain greater con-
sciousness of their organizations purpose.
We could oer many testimonies of people who, with pride and gratitude,
refer to how such practices have helped them become both better persons and
better citizens. Indeed, one of the unmistakable signs of a purpose-driven
company is that, in an ordinary and sometimes unnoticed way, it positively
inuences the families and personal relationships of their employees. By
encouraging various representations of the corporate purpose, employees nd
greater sources of meaning from which to choose. What does the purpose of
the company in which I work mean to me? And how does it help me in the
development of my purpose? ese are central questions in the workshops at
Bimbo, for example, where 130,000 employees reect upon their personal
purpose along with that of the organization.
Besides, uidity is related to the question: what do various individual
employee purposes mean for the company? Consider, for example, the case of
KPMG. After dening the corporate purpose as “inspiring condence and
empowering change” the company did not embark on a typical slogan-based
communication campaign. Instead, partners and managers, with the compa-
ny’s purpose as a backdrop, were encouraged to connect compelling stories
and personal examples about their own purpose. Following this, the rest of
the employees were invited to do the same, combining reections on the cor-
Fig. 2.1 Purpose fluidity
2 Harmonization ofPersonal andOrganizational Purpose
porate purpose with sharing their own accounts of how they believed they
were making a dierence. As a result of maintaining this practice over time,
recruitment improved, employee turnover decreased, and the company
climbed 31 places on Fortune’s list of the 100 Best Companies to Work For.11
Fluidity requires thatcompanies recognize the relevance of each employees
purpose. It means placing the person at the center of the organization and
appreciating his or her dignity and uniqueness. In this way, fostering uidity
at scale is a means to embrace diversity in organizations, as “the idea of embed-
ding plurality in purpose is that we share a common humanity, and people are
kept at the heart of the business enterprise.”12
Consider, for example, the business philosophy of the German company
dm-drogerie markt13 expressed by the motto: “Here I’m a person. Here I’m
shopping!” Initially, it referred to their customers, but naturally started to be
used to refer to the employees as well: “Here I’m a person. Here I’m work-
ing!” ese two simple sentences are the backbone of dm’s business. ey
express the purpose of dm, that is, respect for people, or more precisely, respect
for the value and uniqueness of each individual. dm explains this motto by
stating that it is a commitment to put the individual at the center of every-
thing, whether he/she is a customer or a worker, oering to every person the
right to emphasize his/her individuality. For dm, embracing diversity is much
more than a matter of quotas, but of respecting each individual as he or she is.14
Fluidity allows individuals to connect personal and organizational purposes
without necessarily identifying them. is is especially relevant for the many
positions and professions that are not commonly thought of as professional,
such as the worker in a factory or the cashier at a supermarket. is is
becauseuidity is based on concordance,15 and refers to the extent to which
the organizational purpose can be used by employees to express their authen-
tic interests and values.
We observed this reality in the practice of a store manager at Decathlon,
which he called “the 15 minutes of purpose” meeting. At the beginning of
each day, store employees gathered and exchange tales and anecdotes from the
previous day about how they promoted the corporate purpose of “making
sport accessible to many” (e.g., how an employee helped advise a customer on
how to best prepare for a triathlon, or helped another customer nd the best
bicycle for his particular needs). However, we saw in many cases, that more
enthusiasm was expressed for stories not related to sports but rather, to other
themes that were signicant to the one explaining it (e.g., “I helped a young
boy nd a good present for his girlfriend”; “I made a sad client have a good
time shopping in the store”). Speaking with the employees, we observed that,
even the ones who were not very passionate about sports, by making mean-
C. Rey and I. Malbašić
ingful connections of their personal purposes with the company’s purpose,
gained a better sense of purpose in their activities.
Keeping the dynamic uidity “alive” is about what some have called “mak-
ing every-day-work meaningful.”16 And since uidity goes in two directions,
it is much like friendship or trust. We can trust someone, but if we do not feel
that persons corresponding trust in us, our own trust will be short lived. e
same happens with purpose uidity. If individuals do not see that the organi-
zation values their personal purpose in life, sooner than later they will become
distant to their organizations purpose and purpose uidity will be lost.
When a company hires someone, it hires much more than a particular set of
knowledge and skills. A persons greatest potential lies in hisor her personal
life’s purpose, in the enthusiasm and determination through which he or she
wants to contribute to the betterment of society. It is a desire that exceeds the
eld of labor, but does not at all exclude it. e desire we all have to make a
dierence and contribute to make a better worldis a companys true source of
innovation and creativity, and represents the key to our willingness to con-
stantly improve ourselves, whether that be in knowledge or skill. e greatest
asset of an organization is the personal purpose of each individual and one’s
aspiration to be useful and to leave a mark. Many companies are well aware of
this reality and harness it. Consider, for example, how the Indian IT services
HCL Technologies promotes what they call the Employee Passion Indicator
Count (EPIC), which is used to identify the key “passions” of employees and
to steer them toward jobs where these could be put to best use.17
Purpose synergy is found at the junction of company purpose and personal
purpose (see Fig.2.2). Purpose synergy is the place of overlap between the
Purpose synergy
Fig. 2.2 Purpose synergy
2 Harmonization ofPersonal andOrganizational Purpose
company and the individual, where the interests of the company and its indi-
vidual employees combine to reach its most perfect form. It is not a simple
exercise in self-development, one that is disconnected from the company pur-
pose. Nor is it an exercise in indoctrinating employees with the corporate
purpose. It is not about training courses or communication campaigns. It is
about channeling the potential of the persons purpose within the context of
the company’s purpose. Purpose synergy reveals what the person best brings
to the company and vice versa. us, synergy occurs in part of the company
purpose as well as the individual’s life purpose.
Consider, for example, the case of Alpha Omega, a high-tech medical
device company in Israel devoted to the purpose of improving peoples’ lives.
Its founders, Imad and Reem Younis, have been committed, from a very
young age, to the purpose of developing work environments where Jews and
Arabs can work together in harmony. And in leading their company, they
incorporate this personal purpose into the corporate purpose. ey hire Jews
and Arabs alike, employees who not only excelled at their work, but also share
in a dream of creating inclusive work environments. At Alpha Omega, the
purpose of improving peoples’ lives is dened as “Joined together to improve
people’s life,” creating a strong synergy between organizational purpose and
the personal purpose of the founders and employees. As Imad has said, “it is
like putting my soul inside the company’s soul.”18
When organizations develop purpose synergy, employees nd more energy
and sense of purpose in their work, and feel like “putting their soul into their
work.” One way to create synergy is by recruiting employees who have per-
sonal anities with the organizational purpose. Especially when creating new
companies, this is one of the most powerful ways to create synergy. Another
way, especially relevant in the case of existing employees, is to nd and foster
a purpose that already exists in the organization. Following the principle of “If
it is real, it is possible,” it is about “nding examples of people or teams within
the organization that exceed the norms, examining the purpose that drives
their excellence, and then imagining it imbuing the entire workforce.19
The Joint Effect ofFluidity andSynergy
Fluidity and synergy have common drivers, but are dierent from each other.
Fluidity allows the connecting of personal and organizational purposes with-
out necessarily identifying solely with one or the other. With synergy, how-
ever, both personal and organizational purposes partly or fully identify with
one another, meaning that the organization incorporates the purpose of the
C. Rey and I. Malbašić
individuals and vice versa. We could say that uidity helps organizational and
personal purposes get closer, while synergy integrates them. Fluidity helps to
create unity, synergy is the result of the unity itself.
But together with these fundamental practices, synergy must be reinforced
and sustained by constant uidity. Because if employees do not ow at work,
even the existing synergy can be snued out. Fluidity helps not only to create
synergy, but also to sustain it and keep it alive. is explains why, despite
recruiting people who have a great anity for the corporate purpose, synergy
will not occur if employees, for example, see that the organization is not true
to its purpose or if they feel that the organization does not respect the dignity
and uniqueness of employees’ purpose. And this can happen even in profes-
sional jobs, like those of doctors or teachers, where purpose synergy usually
comes as part and parcel with the profession.
In short, the phenomenon of shared purpose is an inspiration for both
individuals and organizations. Employees should continually seek what is, or
what could inspire them at work, embracing a deeper understanding—that
the purpose of their work is much more than earning a salary or having good
working conditions. Companies, on the other side, should see their employ-
ees not just as human capital or means of return, but as individuals with
invaluable potential with dierent ideas and personalities that provide an
inexhaustible source of creativity. And the responsibility for connecting pur-
pose lies with both—organizations need to be truly interested in what their
employees want to contribute to the world, while at the same time employees
should see their work as a way to fulll collectiveaspirations and dreams.
1. Carton, A.M. (2018). “I’m not mopping the oors, I’m putting a man on the
moon”: How NASA leaders enhanced the meaningfulness of work by chang-
ing the meaning of work. Administrative Science Quarterly, 63(2), 323–369.
2. Craig, N., & Snook, S. (2014). From purpose to impact. Harvard Business
Review, 92(5), 104–111.
3. Covey, S.R. (1989). e 7 habits of highly eective people: Powerful lessons in
personal change. NewYork, NY: Fireside/Simon & Schuster.
4. Ariely, D., Kamenica, E., & Prelec, D. (2008). Man’s search for meaning: e
case of Legos. Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, 67(3–4),
5. Bono, J.E., & Judge, T.A. (2003). Self-concordance at work: Toward under-
standing the motivational eects of transformational leaders. Academy of
Management Journal, 46(5), 554–571.
2 Harmonization ofPersonal andOrganizational Purpose
6. is framework explains that authenticity at work occurs in two sequential
processes. e rst, synchronization, is about the way individuals understand
their own work within the available organizational identities (e.g., “putting a
man on the moon”). e second, harmonization, is related to how individuals
understand their work combining self-identities (e.g., “I want to make an
impact on society”) and organizational identities. Harmonization enhances
the understanding of how the work and self-identities dynamically exchange
meaning (“identity uidity”) and how they enrich each other (“identity syn-
ergy”). Caza, B.B., Moss, S., & Vough, H. (2017). From synchronizing to
harmonizing: e process of authenticating multiple work identities.
Administrative Science Quarterly, 63(4), 703–745.
7. Ramarajan, L., & Reid, E. (2013). Shattering the myth of separate worlds:
Negotiating nonwork identities at work. Academy of Management Review,
38(4), 621–644.
8. ompson, J. A., & Bunderson, J. S. (2003). Violations of principle:
Ideological currency in the psychological contract. Academy of Management
Review, 28(4), 571–586.
9. Birkinshaw, J., Foss, N.J., & Lindenberg, S. (2014). Combining purpose
with prots. MIT Sloan Management Review, 55(3), 49.
10. Grant, A.M. (2012). Leading with meaning: Beneciary contact, prosocial
impact, and the performance eects of transformational leadership. Academy
of Management Journal, 55(2), 458–476.
11. Quinn, R. E., & akor, A.V. (2018, July–August). Creating a purpose-
driven organization. Harvard Business Review, pp.78–85.
12. Hollensbe, E., Wookey, C., Hickey, L., George, G., & Nichols, C.V. (2014).
Organizations with purpose. Academy of Management Journal, 57(5),
13. One of the largest drug chains in Central and South-Eastern Europe, estab-
lished in 1973in Karlsruhe, Germany, that sells cosmetics, healthcare items,
household products, and health food.
14. ere are many interesting aspects of purpose uidity at dm. One fascinating
part is the story about the founder and owner of dm. Just when everybody
thought that he had done everything possible for his “capitalism with a
human face,” the world was astonished to learn that he had decided to leave
his fortune not to his children (and he had seven!), but to give it away for
charitable purposes. is resonates even more when one realizes that his
wealth is estimated at more than a billion euros. is amazing decision was
for him reasonable, as it was based on a principle deeply ingrained in his per-
sonal purpose: “ere is no shame in becoming rich, but it is a shame to die
15. Sheldon, K.M., & Elliot, A.J. (1999). Goal striving, need satisfaction, and
longitudinal well-being: e self-concordance model. Journal of Personality
and Social Psychology, 76(3), 482.
C. Rey and I. Malbašić
16. Almandoz, J., Lee, Y., & Ribera, A. (2018). Unleashing the power of purpose:
5 steps to transform your business, IESE Insight, 37, Second Quarter, 44–51.
17. Birkinshaw, J., Foss, N.J., & Lindenberg, S. (2014). Combining purpose
with prots. MIT Sloan Management Review, 55(3), 49.
18. Retrieved
January 30, 2019.
19. Quinn, R. E., & akor, A.V. (2018, July–August). Creating a purpose-
driven organization. Harvard Business Review, pp.78–85.
Open Access is chapter is licensed under the terms of the Creative Commons
Attribution 4.0 International License (,
which permits use, sharing, adaptation, distribution and reproduction in any medium
or format, as long as you give appropriate credit to the original author(s) and the
source, provide a link to the Creative Commons licence and indicate if changes were
e images or other third party material in this chapter are included in the chap-
ter’s Creative Commons licence, unless indicated otherwise in a credit line to the
material. If material is not included in the chapter’s Creative Commons licence and
your intended use is not permitted by statutory regulation or exceeds the permitted
use, you will need to obtain permission directly from the copyright holder.
2 Harmonization ofPersonal andOrganizational Purpose
... Se trata de un encuentro personal con el propósito de la organización: ¿qué significado tiene para mí el propósito corporativo? ¿Qué conexión tiene con mis valores y motivaciones personales?(Rey y Malbašić, 2019). Es preciso aprender a construir relaciones sanas en las que los colaboradores se sientan psicológicamente seguros(Edmondson, 2018) para poder iniciar conversaciones auténticas, conocer los valores predominantes en cada trabajador y llegar a conectarlos con el propósito de la organización.• ...
Technical Report
Full-text available
En los últimos años, el propósito corporativo se ha convertido en un hot topic en el mundo del management: las cartas de Larry Fink, la declaración de la Business Roundtable, el manifiesto de Davos o el auge del capitalismo de los stakeholders son prueba de ello. Diversos autores defienden la crucial necesidad de que las empresas definan y activen su propósito para poder inspirar confianza en el mercado y ganarse así una legitimidad social que les permita seguir operando. Parece claro que no es lo mismo definir que vivir el propósito y que los efectos del propósito corporativo surgen en la medida en la que las empresas lo implanten en su día a día, de tal manera que haya un sentido de propósito compartido entre los empleados. Sin embargo, el conocimiento sobre cómo implantarlo es escaso y se tienen pocas evidencias sobre ello. En este informe, presentamos los resultados de cuatro años de investigación en la que se ha combinado experiencia práctica con desarrollos teóricos avanzados. Tras evaluar más de 50 empresas de 11 países, aquí se exponen los principales resultados de nuestra investigación sobre la implantación del propósito corporativo, cuáles son los efectos a nivel individual y colectivo y cuáles las principales palancas que lo impulsan, y qué condiciones potencian su implantación. Además, presentamos el indicador Purpose Strength Index®, cuyo objetivo es evaluar la implantación del propósito y 10 recomendaciones prácticas con el fin de ayudar a las organizaciones a desplegar su propósito corporativo y potenciar sus efectos.
... It should be noted that all this is being built at the personal and individual level, in the interest of that adjustment between the person and the organization, which is key to the flourishing of both [43]. That is to say, if an agency must help its clients to build a true corporate purpose, first it is necessary for the agency to have its own purpose clear, and its professionals too, and all of them aligned in a balanced way, as Bauer [44], or Rey and Malbašic [45], among many others, point out. When a person has a clear vital purpose as an individual and, to a great extent, that purpose is in accordance with his professional facet, the vital and labor fulfillment becomes more feasible. ...
Full-text available
Happiness at work is a consolidated topic. Perhaps the PR and communication sector, often at the forefront of organizational change, is one of the industries where most progress has been made in this regard. The objective of the present study was to carry out an exploratory analysis on the extent to which PR is a profession that enables the development of happiness in the workplace. To this end, a questionnaire was administered to a sample of PR professionals in Spain (N = 256). The questionnaire consisted of the PERMA-profiler, a model where work relationships, engagement, positive affections/emotions, vital sense/purpose and achievements are measured. The results show a remarkable level of happiness among surveyed professionals, especially among women, who obtained higher scores on all five factors, although with a statistically significant difference only in two of the five factors in PERMA (Engagement and Relationships). Neither age nor the hierarchical level of the respondent had any incidence. Therefore, PR can be a profession that notably enables human flourishing at work, even more so among women.
... Purpose is described in the literature as relating to social and economic considerations in addition to psychological forces (Rey & Malbasic, 2019). A sense of Purpose was identified as a core motivation category for this sample of accountants. ...
Die für uns in diesem Kapitel zentrale Frage lautet: Wie sollte eine technische Unterstützung aussehen, die sowohl die individuellen Bedürfnisse der Lernenden als auch die organisationale Entwicklung in Richtung Meta-Moderner Organisationen unterstützt, sowie als digitaler Nährboden für eine neue Lernkultur dienen kann? Wir möchten hierzu im Laufe des Kapitels ein mögliches Zielbild beschreiben, das unter Berücksichtigung der New Learning Fokusfelder wesentliche technologische Aspekte für zukunftsfähige Lernökosysteme aufzeigt. Dafür werfen wir zuerst einen Blick auf den Status Quo und greifen dann die Trends im Learning Technology/EdTech (Educational Technology) Bereich auf, ergänzt um viele Beispiele von verschiedenen Anbietern. Dies sind vornehmlich Systeme, die wir bereits selbst getestet oder im Einsatz haben. Es gibt darüber hinaus sicherlich noch andere passende oder sogar bessere Anbieter und Tools, uns war es allerdings daran gelegen primär jene zu nennen, mit denen wir bereits Erfahrung sammeln konnten.
Das Herz dieses Buches stellt Kap. 5 dar. Bis hierher haben wir den Kontext, eine Meta-Sicht auf organisationale Entwicklung und Lernen, sowie die Auswirkungen auf den organisationalen Rahmen beschrieben. Nun geht es darum, diese Erkenntnisse auf Lernen zu übertragen.
Lernkultur ist Teil der Organisationskultur. Sie stellt den Rahmen des Lernens in der Organisation dar und bietet Organisationsmitgliedern Orientierung darüber, was in der Organisation als bedeutsam erachtet wird und welche Verhaltensweisen von ihnen erwartet werden. Aktuelle Befragungen zeigen, dass die erlebte Kultur in Organisationen nicht im umfassenden Sinne lernförderlich ist. Es besteht in vielen Organisationen also noch akuter Handlungsbedarf, die Organisationskultur in Richtung einer New Learning Culture weiterzuentwickeln. Das Kapitel entwirft ein entsprechendes Zielbild der New Learning Culture und führt Ansatzpunkte zu ihrer Förderung auf.
Full-text available
Is it possible for a company to strive for a higher purpose while also delivering solid profits? Some have argued that pursuing goals other than making money means, by definition, spending on things that aren't profit-maximizing. Others have countered that by investing in worthwhile causes the company is doing something intrinsically valuable that will generate a long-term payoff to all parties. In the authors' view, the important question is not whether there is some tension between purpose and profits; there is. Instead, the question to ask is: How can the tension between purpose and profits best be managed? This article is based on research that the authors conducted over the last five years looking at the organizational challenges involved in managing two different objectives at the same time. The authors describe how goal-framing theory provides an understanding of why pursuing "pro-social" goals which the authors define as goals that involve working toward common causes that go beyond just making money and staying in business creates a stronger motivational basis for working in organizations than does pursuing self-interest goals that emphasize financial gain or personal enjoyment. The authors' research identified many companies with a clear sense of purpose, typically expressed as a set of pro-social goals such as putting employees first or investing in local communities. In the majority of cases, there was no discernible impact on the way employees actually behaved; however, the authors also found a small number of highly successful companies whose pro-social goals seemed genuine. Using examples such as Svenska Handelsbanken, Tata Group and HCL Technologies, the authors argue that there are a few organizing principles that help a company sustain its sense of purpose over time while still achieving a solid level of profitability. For example, they observe that pro-social goals need supporting systems within the company if they are to stick. Even with such supporting systems, however, the authors note that it is quite common to see executives bowing to short-term financial pressures.
Full-text available
How much of our self is defined by our work? Fundamental changes in the social organization of work are destabilizing the relationship between work and the self. As a result, parts of the self traditionally considered outside the domain of work-that is, nonwork identities-are increasingly affected by organizations and occupations. Based on an interdisciplinary review of literature on identity and work, we develop a model of how people negotiate nonwork identities (e.g., national, gender, family) in the context of organizational/occupational pressures and personal preferences regarding this identity. We propose that the dual forces of pressures and preferences vary from inclusion (e.g., incorporating the nonwork identity within the work identity) to exclusion (e.g., keeping the identities separate). We suggest that the alignment or misalignment of these pressures and preferences shapes people's experience of the power relationship between themselves and their organization/occupation and affects how they manage their nonwork identities. We describe how people enact different nonwork identity management strategies-namely, assenting to, complying with, resisting, or inverting the pressures-and delineate the consequences of these strategies for people and their organizations/occupations.
Full-text available
Editor's note: This editorial is part of a series written by editors and co-authored with a senior executive, thought leader, or scholar from a different field to explore new content areas and grand challenges with the goal of expanding the scope, interestingness, and relevance of the work presented in the Academy of Management Journal. The principle is to use the editorial notes as " stage setters " to open up fresh new areas of inquiry for management research. GG The deepest resources for the transformation of business, as for society as a whole, lie within the human heart. It is there we have to seek what it is we truly value and yearn for, and where we can harness the strongest motivation to change— ourselves , our organizations, and our world—for the better. Cardinal Vincent Nichols
It is assumed that leaders can boost the motivation of employees by communicating the organization’s ultimate aspirations, yet evidence on the effectiveness of this tactic is equivocal. On some occasions, it causes employees to view their work as more meaningful. At other times, it causes them to become dispirited. These inconsistent findings may in part be explained by a paradox: the very features that make ultimate aspirations meaningful—their breadth and timelessness—undermine the ability of employees to see how their daily responsibilities are associated with them. To understand how leaders can help employees resolve this paradox, I analyzed archival evidence to explore the actions of President John F. Kennedy when leading NASA in the 1960s. I found that Kennedy enacted four sensegiving steps, each of which helped employees see a stronger connection between their work and NASA’s ultimate aspirations. When this connection was strongest, employees construed their day-to-day work not as short-term tasks (“I’m building electrical circuits”) but as the pursuit of NASA’s long-term objective (“I’m putting a man on the moon”) and the aspiration this objective symbolized (“I’m advancing science”). My findings redirect research by conceptualizing leaders as architects who motivate employees most effectively when they provide a structural blueprint that maps the connections between employees’ everyday work and the organization’s ultimate aspirations.
We recommend the inclusion of "ideological currency" in the psychological contract perspective in order to broaden the range of employee-organization exchanges that the perspective can accommodate. We differentiate ideological currency from other forms of exchange currency and develop a model that articulates the conditions under which the breach and violation of ideology-infused psychological contracts will likely occur. We conclude by considering the opportunities and challenges implied by the inclusion of ideology in the psychological contract. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2012 APA, all rights reserved)
We extend existing theories by linking transformational leadership to "self-concordance" at work. In two studies using diverse samples and methods, leader behaviors were associated with follower tendencies to set self-concordant goals. In general, followers of transformational leaders viewed their work as more important and as more self-congruent. The effects of self-concordant work goals on job attitudes and performance were generally positive; however, the pattern of relationships differed in the field study and the experimental study. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2012 APA, all rights reserved)
Although transformational leadership is thought to increase followers' performance by motivating them to transcend self-interest, rhetoric alone may not be sufficient. I propose that transformational leadership is most effective in motivating followers when they interact with the beneficiaries of their work, which highlights how the vision has meaningful consequences for other people. In a quasi-experimental study, beneficiary contact strengthened the effects of transformational leadership on call center employees' sales and revenue. A survey study with government employees extended these results, supporting a moderated mediation model with perceived prosocial impact. Relational job design can enhance the motivational effects of transformational leadership.
We investigate how perceived meaning influences labor supply. In a laboratory setting, we manipulate the perceived meaning of simple, repetitive tasks and find a strong influence on subjects’ labor supply. Despite the fact that the wage and the task are identical across the conditions in each experiment, subjects in the less meaningful conditions exhibit reservation wages that are consistently much higher than the subjects in the more meaningful conditions. The result replicates across different types of tasks. Moreover, in the more meaningful conditions, subjects’ productivity influences labor supply more strongly.
An integrative model of the conative process, which has important ramifications for psychological need satisfaction and hence for individuals' well-being, is presented. The self-concordance of goals (i.e., their consistency with the person's developing interests and core values) plays a dual role in the model. First, those pursuing self-concordant goals put more sustained effort into achieving those goals and thus are more likely to attain them. Second, those who attain self-concordant goals reap greater well-being benefits from their attainment. Attainment-to-well-being effects are mediated by need satisfaction, i.e., daily activity-based experiences of autonomy, competence, and relatedness that accumulate during the period of striving. The model is shown to provide a satisfactory fit to 3 longitudinal data sets and to be independent of the effects of self-efficacy, implementation intentions, avoidance framing, and life skills.
From purpose to impact
  • N Craig
  • S Snook
Craig, N., & Snook, S. (2014). From purpose to impact. Harvard Business Review, 92(5), 104-111.