This chapter explores the construct of purpose in organizations, contextualizes it within a framework of corporate social responsibility and a stakeholder-centered ethos, and provides the rationale for purpose along two dimensions: the externally focused business case and the internally focused moral case. The business case for purpose is explored across three organizational facets: (a) financial results, (b) brand reputation, and (c) an organizational culture grown from employee satisfaction. The moral case is then detailed along three concepts: (a) virtuous responsibility that is tied to a moral compass, circularity, and eudaemonia; (b) social ambition, as separate from social capital, and representative of inner drive; and (c) regenerative legacy. While both the business case and the moral case are replete with findings that being a purpose-driven organization better meets the demands of consumers, yields more sustainable financial results, promotes a stronger workplace culture, and produces better outcomes across stakeholders, it has not been strong enough to prompt most US businesses to lead with purpose. However, as businesses adapt to shifting world trends, successful leaders will need to recognize the value of centering purpose in their practices.
"True character is revealed in the choices a human being makes under pressure - the greater the pressure, the deeper the revelation, the truer the choice to the character's essential nature." - Robert McKee