Finding Fit At Work: A Guide For Purpose-Seeking Professionals
Among the six Spheres of Impact, it is true that many of us spend more time at work, doing our job than anything else. So it is natural that we place more emphasis on the impact of our work than other Spheres. Indeed, there are two Spheres that speak to our work: as well as our Job, and the specific role we hold, it’s important to consider the Workplace in which we do that work. Your workplace might be virtual or physical, and it might be a series of organizations or even an industry if you’re a freelancer or contractor.
Regardless of what it looks like, there are ways you can have an impact in that Workplace Sphere, by investing time, attention, energy or money intentionally.
Two Dimensions of The Workplace: What You Do and Where You Do It
In the dynamic intersection of work and impact, the Workplace Sphere is a multifaceted arena. Whether in a traditional role, pro bono consulting, or part-time engagement, executives can shape the trajectory of their career by strategically choosing where they invest their skills. Specifically, professionals can choose a Workplace based on what it does. This might be determined by its sector: government agencies and not-for-profits are bound by external constraints to do work in service of the public or a specific group of beneficiaries. Social enterprises — a varied group of entities that I’ll define as for-profit, for-purpose companies — seek to create results while generating profit.
And many traditional for-profits are still wrapped up in the idea that a business’s sole social purpose is to maximize profits for shareholders, though this perspective is rapidly losing currency. Paul Polman, who established Unilever’s Sustainable Living Brands as chair, said, “More and more businesses are seeing the potential of a more sustainable business model, driven both by the firm belief that business can be a force for good and by the realization that the cost of inaction often exceeds the cost of action — notably when it comes to the growing threat of climate change and water scarcity.”
Of course, there are myriad industries within each of these sectors that you can choose to dedicate your skills and time to, based on their alignment with the impact you seek..