Current Meeting Topic

Tell us your ‘WHY’

WHY Purpose in Business, What’s your why?

Here is a recap of the last education topic:

WHY Purpose in Business, What’s your why?

Today people are looking or businesses that provide more than just products or services, they want to connect with businesses that are passionate about what they do. Businesses that have tapped into our cultures deep desire to for a purpose.
“The two most important days in your life are the day you are born and the day you find out why.” — Mark Twain.
No one can tell you what your “why” is. It’s personal. But there are a few things you can do to help uncover it. Here are four questions to consider when determining your why:

1. What makes you come alive? We all have something in our lives that make us feel alive. Something that brings us joy, fulfilment and excitement. This is a great way to begin to uncover your purpose.
2. What are your innate strengths? You are naturally great at some things. Lean into your strengths and find a way you can use them to impact others.
3. Where do you add the greatest value? This is more of a follow up to the question above. Most people have a few strengths, so which ones could produce the greatest value?
4. How will you measure your life? Stopping and thinking about how and who you want to be remembered as will help you better define how you will measure your life.

Why does your ‘why’ matter?

Once you have your “why”, you then need to share it in a way that resonates with your audience. Authenticity and follow through are huge here. You must be able to back up what you say.

Every business needs to have a strong purpose. Purpose steers your company and helps make sure that everyone is heading in the same direction. It also helps your audience better understand your why. Once you’ve locked that down, you can begin to work on how you need to share your story in a way to connects on a deeper level.

Here are a few examples from some notable brands.

• Facebook: “To give people the power to share and make the world more open and connected.”
• PayPal: “To build the Web’s most convenient, secure, cost-effective payment solution.”
• Tesla: “Our goal when we created Tesla a decade ago was the same as it is today: to accelerate the advent of sustainable transport by bringing compelling mass market electric cars to market as soon as possible.”
• Sony: “To be a company that inspires and fulfills your curiosity.”
• Google: “To organize the world’s information and make it universally accessible and useful.”
• Venus: “To build a network of like minded business women who want to be in an environment where they can learn and grow both themselves and their businesses while supporting, encouraging and motivating one another”
Each of these companies know who they are and why they do what they do. Success is not an accident. It takes effort, creativity and purpose.
A business with purpose is one that attracts people naturally.


Education Topic

Business Values and Ethics

As you will be aware the guiding principles behind Venus are our values. Our values are at the heart of everything we do. We are proud of our commitment to grow a values led business and community and are convinced this is the foundation of our success.

Our values are:

  • COMPASSIONATE HONESTY
  • GENEROSITY OF SPIRIT
  • LIVING WITH INTEGRITY
  • ACTING LOVINGLY AND WITH RESPECT
  • COLLABORATION AND GROWTH

If you look at any successful business and you will see a set of values that have stood the test of time.

Ethics is based on a set of moral and ethical values. These values must be absolute – that is, you must take them seriously enough to override any human rationalization, weakness, ego, or personal faults. When all else fails, you will always look back to these core values to guide you.

Typical business values generally cover the following:

Honesty – is always the best policy and is more true today in business than ever before.

Integrity – denotes strength and stability.

Responsibility – blaming others or passing the buck may give temporary relief but refusal to take responsibility erodes respect and cohesion in business. Ethical people take responsibility for their actions.

Quality – is more than making the best product or providing the best service and ideally extends to every aspect of your work. A businesswoman who recognises quality and is driven by a need to look after her clients has a sense of self respect, pride in accomplishment and attentiveness to detail that is reflected in everything. From presentations, preparation for business meetings and even the way she dresses everything communications professionalism.

Trust – is hard to earn and even harder to get back after you’ve lost it. Everyone who comes in contact with you personally or your business must have trust and confidence in how you do business.

Respect – is more than a feeling, but a demonstration of honour, value, and reverence for something or someone. We respect the laws, the people we work with, the clients and ourselves.

Teamwork – two or more employees together make a team. It is a business necessity to work openly and supportively in teams whether formal or informal. This is particularly relevant in Venus where we have member businesses forming teams and working collaboratively alongside one another.

Leadership – how many hardworking, honest businesses have been tainted and led astray by leadership failings, whether you are a one woman band working collaboratively with other businesses or someone with staff, being a leader is about being out in front providing an example that others will follow.

A businesses values or ethics initiative must be “sold” and “marketed”. Every forum and medium should be used to spread the message. (Of course, it will only be credible if the company is practising what it preaches!). If you’re not sure what your values and ethics are, the clue is to have a wee think about what your clients would say about you as a business woman and also about the business you’re running.

Over the next fortnight think about the values you hold dear to your business and your business life and how those affect your clients and yourself.

Carolyn Banks, CEO Venus Network

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