“What the world needs now is love, sweet love, it’s the only thing that there’s just too little of…” Doesn’t that old song just hit the nail on the head? And now, years down the road, the problem has grown to the size of an elephant (in the room).
As a society, we no longer seem to know what love is even. The very definition of love has been tampered with, and society has become sicker for it. Our world has transformed and the evildoers seem to be getting away with it.
Whether it’s football clubs bending the rules in order to avoid having hundreds of charges levied against them, or politicians covering new lows in a quest to hide their wrongdoing, or even TV presenters and celebrities spending out on injunctions rather than simply controlling themselves in the first place. Children are being abused or losing their innocence to sexual misdemeanours at the hands of those who should know better and who continue to live as if nothing happened. Lust is surely alive and kicking.
There is a difference between love and lust, and it can be articulated easily:
Love is giving at the expense of self, and lust is getting at the expense of others.
When we think of lust, we automatically think of sex, power and money. Pursuing these things for their own sake is a symptom of a heart condition – i.e. a heart that is not connected to true purpose. Getting back to being purposeful is one sure way of fixing things.
The clearest result of lust that I can see in our generation is people who are willing to compromise everything to ensure that they win, and win at all costs. The victims (as there are always casualties in this game) are gaslit and forced to carry on as if nothing happened.
As with data, for example.
If there is one thing we have learned about data over the last few years, it is that the data presented doesn’t always tell the truth. In fact, it seems that it’s better to do your own analysis, hold your ground and just allow time to reveal the truth. The passage of time reveals the facts. Many victims have found justice, corruption has been exposed and people’s true character has been revealed over time.
Business is a great mirror to reflect the issues we have to live with, and doing business well gives you the power to shift the narrative and change things for the better.
A growing number of entrepreneurs are asking questions and reshaping the norms that have framed the workforce for so long. I’d go so far as to say that the workforce leaders are becoming a light force, shifting the disfunction by asking questions and providing answers.
And how about education? I know it’s easy for me to criticise as I’m on the outside looking in, but it looks like a bit of a mess to me. Elite performers know that everyone is different and that a “one size fits all” approach won’t bring out the best. Hammering a square peg into a round hole with a jackhammer still doesn’t make it fit.
So, guess what I have been encountering? Entrepreneurs who are taking their children out of the system and choosing to do what they see as right for their kids over what is right for the system. I’ve become a huge advocate for home education as I see almost instantly, when I interact with the home educated children of friends, a refreshing level of confidence in them.
I’m also a firm advocate of providing work experience opportunities. In doing this, I’ve seen, over the years, a high percentage of the young people who have come through our doors have little confidence in the present, let alone in the future. It isn’t about “manning up” or standing up for yourself, it’s more that the system has been failing them and, no matter what you say, the truth is that many people aren’t buying it any more. They’ve got their receipts, and they are claiming the time back.
It seems to me that an emphasis on statistical outcomes, in the education sector, is actually killing kids’ futures. Schools even expel pupils because difficult, underperforming ones are messing with the stats. Government organisations put so much fear into teachers to play the system that teachers are leaving the profession and, sadly, a few are even giving up all together.
So how do we fight back? How can we reshape the world by challenging the norms effectively? I believe that it’s necessary to go back and look at how things started, whether it’s in education or in sport, and find out what motivated the original founder.
You see, we can learn a lot by predicting the future, but we can learn an awful lot more by delving into the past.
Let’s take football for example, where many of today’s clubs existed for the betterment of a community. Liverpool FC and Everton FC were both started by a vicar named Ben Chambers as a means of keeping the cricketers fit in the winter, but also a way of helping men towards fitness and well-being. Manchester United helped the railwaymen of Newton Heath and beyond.
It was never about money, it was about helping. And while the games were competitive, it was fitness, wellbeing and bringing communities together that were the motivations.
That is why Wrexham FC’s story is so compelling, as the famous owners have understood what is at the club’s heart. It’s all about a community, and that has made all the difference, bringing people back to the heart of things.
Now, each club has its origin story, but the quest for winning has seen clubs sell out at the expense of their DNA.
Purpose keeps us accountable, and not losing sight of that purpose should be a priority. The antidote to lust is love. Showing people what is real often exposes what is fake.
The counterfeit police don’t get a dossier of all the fake notes doing the rounds, no, they are shown bona fide banknotes in order to recognise the original so well that they can spot the fake a mile off.
Purpose is inherently birthed in love. It is motivated by a heart to do good. A heart that wants to serve, not just sell. I see purpose reinventing business, education and sport!
Purpose requires the prioritisation of what matters most, and for businesses leading this way, clients benefit so much more.
Purpose is a reinvention or a reminder. The greatest innovation you can bring to your business is to re-establish true purpose, and that is why we do what we do.
To address a world affected by lust, purpose is the antidote, because love is the motivation.
Purposeful business is all about leading with love, and that is why we make purpose our priority. Those entrepreneurs that are part of our universe are doing just that, striding towards purpose. They don’t lose sight of the meaning behind the methods they employ.
Iggy Pop sang about a ‘Lust for Life’, and the lyrics speak about how, although it all seems right in the short term, long term, you’ll see a fair share of casualties.
Purpose makes people a priority and celebrates that we can all succeed with the right support. It’s not about dividing and conquering, but rather unifying and motivating one another to be better, do better and ultimately leave this earth better than we found it.
It is time we put purpose at the heart of politics, business and education to address its disfunction and disfigurement.
That is something we love to do. Let us show you how.