Lead your business with purpose, like Whole Foods Market

What is the purpose of your business?

This question takes thought, planning and a real understanding of what your business stands for.

It is NOT a list of the things that you do in your business. It’s about the values of your business, a deeper meaning that connects and binds everyone involved. It’s about something that is rooted deep in the culture of your business, intrinsic to all the actions taken and decisions made – something that you and your team believe in and live every day!

Whole Foods Market is a great example of a business that led with purpose and survived and prospered because of it.

Whole Foods Market had been in business for just 8 months when their store was hit by a storm. Torrential rain meant the store was under 8 feet of water, and all of their equipment and food stocks were destroyed – £300,000 worth. With no savings or insurance, they were financially wiped out.

For the founders John Mackey and Renee Lawson, it felt as if their short-lived dream was ending in a nightmare. But as the day unfolded, customers and neighbours started showing up with mops and buckets. When asked why, their response was:

“Whole Foods is really important to me.”

“I’m not sure I’d want to live here if it wasn’t for Whole Foods.”

And it wasn’t just the customers who helped Whole Foods Market get back on their feet. Team members worked for free, suppliers offered to resupply with extended credit and investors helped with refinancing.

One month after the storm, the store re-opened. They eventually paid everyone back and became an internationally recognised health food store.

In 2017 Amazon bought Whole Foods Market for just over £10 billion!

Why did Whole Foods Market become such a success? Because the customers, the team and the investors cared deeply about the purpose of this business – “to nourish people and the planet” – and what it stood for.

What is your purpose, your reason for being?

What does your business stand for?

Click here to read more about Whole Foods Market and how leading your business with purpose really will make a difference.

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