I’ve written a bit over time about the value of a unifying business purpose, the way it can unify and motivate the stakeholders of an enterprise, often beyond the boundaries of just employees.

It is all easy to say, but apparently very hard to do, as the number of mission statements, and articulation of business purpose that are around that are no more than a bunch of cliches written on a whiteboard in some strategy session simply because it is on the agenda of things to get through.

Tom Fishburne again nails the notion of business purpose as a cliché in this cartoon, one picture tells the story of most efforts.

The video embedded in the copy around the cartoon is worth a look, it articulates via the story of Raleigh jeans the value of a real purpose as opposed to a confected one.  The video also addresses the notion of manufacturing being brought closer to the geographic source of the business purpose, another hobby horse, as I see the beginnings of supply chains contracting around local capabilities, rather than being outsourced  for apparent short term cost benefits, without understanding the long term implications.