Volume 61, April 2006: Purpose

Keyzine: An E-zine for Leaders about the People Side of Business

This is a monthly electronic magazine for anyone who wants to be a better leader, coach, facilitator, or simply, to tune up their people skills. It is a complimentary publication, devoted to the next evolution of Quality Thinking.

Publisher: © Key Associates, LLC, 2006 ISSN # 1545-8873

“Purpose is the acupuncture point of Integrity. When we live it, everything that is meaningful to us, our values and our highest beliefs come into alignment and we become the expression of the best part of ourselves.” — Richard Jacobs

“[E]verything in the world must have design or the human mind rejects it. But in addition it must have purpose or the human conscience shies away from it.” — John Steinbeck

“This is the true joy in life, the being used for a purpose you consider a mighty one …” — George Bernard Shaw


  • What’s Hot in Leadership
  • Maintaining Yourself as a Leader
  • Frequently Asked Questions from Leaders
  • Educational Opportunities
  • Useful Websites & Newsletters
  • Articles/Publications

What’s Hot in Leadership

  • Leading from, and on, purpose.
  • Clarity on personal purpose and connection to the work you are engaged in.
  • Courageous yet reflective leadership.
  • Clarity of intention and speaking the truth about what matters.

Maintaining Yourself as a Leader

Purpose defines the character of a leader – his or her values, motivation, and integrity. Clarity of purpose is the essence of espit de corps, the strong sense of enthusiasm and dedication to a common goal that can unite a group. Being clear on your purpose (self-leadership) is the key to inspiring others – breathing life into their energies. Encourage courageous conversations, speaking from the heart. Lead on (and with) purpose.

Frequently Asked Questions

“What is purpose?”
  • Why you exist.
  • Your aim.
  • Your reason for being.
  • Your reason for getting up in the morning.

Answered by these questions:

  • Who am I?
  • What am I meant to do here?
  • What am I trying to do with my life?

Every one of us needs a reason for getting up in the morning. (Richard J. Leider, 1997)

“How do you discover your purpose?”
This is not a problem to solve, but a process to engage in – perhaps life-long. Victor Frankl suggested that we find meaning in life in three ways: (1) by doing a deed; (2) by experiencing a value; and (3) by suffering. On the first point, notice what it is that you do and what your “gifts” are. What work calls forth your gifts? Where are your talents most active? Second, what moves you? Where are your passions? “What need in society do I exist to fulfill?” Lastly, devastating events can be triggers, because they disrupt the comfortable order of our lives and cause us to reassess our purpose. Use these interruptions to reflect on what you must get accomplished in life. Clarity of purpose comes more easily through quiet, reflective listening, noticing, and realizing, rather than active searching – most writers on this topic will agree.
“Can you suggest some exercises a person or group might do to clarify purpose?”
  • Write your life’s story.
  • Draw a timeline and dot it with significant events. Notice where the line is headed.
  • Write your obituary. “People would remember me as one who …”
  • What would you like to leave as your legacy?
  • Write or discuss with others how you express your natural talents.
  • Identify people who have inspired you and why.
  • Ask, “Why do I get up on Monday morning?”
  • What if you only have a year to live? What must you get done? (to have no regrets)
  • If you were bestowed $10 million dollars, what would you do with it?
  • How do you add value to the world? How do you “make a difference?”
  • What is your “natural work?” Where do you feel most in your element?
  • What does your heart tell you is your calling? What moves you?
  • In a moment of solitude or on sabbatical, ask …
  • Envision a “well-lived” day, a perfect day. Describe the components of it.


What’s your purpose? Seven steps to find it: What’s your Purpose?.

Keyzines on related topics: Coaching, Spirit at Work, Motivation, and The Power of Vision.

Write a unique Statement of Purpose (SoP).

Useful Websites & Newsletters

The Power of Purpose.

Free coaching session on Life on Purpose: Life On Purpose Resource Center.



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