Too many owners see their businesses either as an irritation to endure or as a machine merely for profit-generation.
A business is so much more.
Business and commerce are incredible tools in the hands of thoughtful owners that can be leveraged as a powerful force for life transformation in the major areas of life– faith, family, finances, friends, etc.
Ryan O’Shaugnessey’s is a growing Project Manager at Premier Exteriors LLC. Ryan and his wife are an intentional young couple who have been working hard to set up into adulthood found themselves, as so many do, in debt that placed a constriction to the household.
Zack Howard, the head of Operations for Taylors Quality Landscape Supply likewise found himself swimming both in “big boy toys” and swimming equally in debt.
Culturally it has become the norm to look down the proverbial block and see what “The Joneses” have and make a subtle, often subconscious, and consequential decision thinking, “surely if they can afford that then I can too.”
Credit lenders abound in both their availability and often their simplicity in extending what Dave Ramsey so comically and truthfully stated is money to “… buy things we don’t need with money we don’t have to impress people we don’t like.”
For some it is the “Joneses” mindset, for others it may be student loans. Regardless, owing other people money stinks and is well cautioned, “the borrower is slave to the lender”, I’ll add, no matter the purpose, the terms nor the interest.
Owing a debt is usually a weight.
Justin Harvey owns Premier Exteriors and Gerrick Taylor owns Taylors Quality Landscape Supply. Both owners separately saw an opportunity to leverage their business as a force for personal transformation and began to offer Dave Ramsey’s Financial Peace University to their team members as a means for personal growth and development.
Gerrick partnered with Live Oak Christian Church who provided trained facilitators for the course.
After the entire 13 week course was complete for both Premier and Taylors team members, the results were almost unimaginable.
The O’Shaughnessy’s systematically and courageously paid off $68,000 in 15 months! That is a weight of $151 every day for 450 days they got rid and whimsically whisked away to the beach to celebrate! This letter from Ryan and Amber is a tangible momento for Justin and proof that you can build a business on purpose.
For Zack, he single-handedly starting barreling down his debt to the point he paid off $50,000 during the course of the program. Gerrick as the owner provided the opportunity and the vision, Zack brought the hard work and implementation. Vision without implementation is hallucination.
To prove Zack’s lack of hallucination he courageously stood in front of the entire Taylors team and shared, numbers and all, his journey and success. It led to eight other team members filling up another Financial Peace class so the momentum could continue.
Your business IS your mission. Your business can transform the lives of real people. As the owner, leverage your business for profit, leverage your business for connection, leverage your business for impact, and leverage your business for the transformation of lives!
Here are three ways to leverage your business for the transformation of your team and the people they influence.
First, write your business vision down on paper and share it with your team. Seriously. Don’t just think, “oh, that’s a neat idea!” Do it. Write it down. Share it openly.
Your business vision should have seven categories you write out: duration (18-36 months ideally), family and freedom, financial, product and/or service, team and employees, client type, and what your culture will be.
Once you have shared your vision invite your team to write a vision for their family or household. What do they want for their family, their faith, fitness, finances, and friendships?
Next, teach financial literacy in your business and provide opportunities for your team to work on their own financial stewardship. Talk about how a dollar that comes into the business does not remain as a whole dollar. Explain that every dollar gets fractionated out in payroll, taxes, cost of goods, etc.
Also, talk about the importance of personal financial stewardship both at work and at home. Bad stewardship should never determine compensation either way.
Finally, tie a team members work back to the community they serve and the purpose they have in their life. Of course this requires that team members know their purpose. Walk with them through a simple process of asking each person, “what motivates you?”
Real transformation will not take place the first time you take advantage of any of these opportunities but instead evolves over time and repetition. Team meetings and intentional time calendaring serves as the invitation for solid repetition.
Scott Beebe is the founder of Business On Purpose, author of Let Your Business Burn: Stop Putting Out Fires, Discover Purpose, And Build A Business That Matters. Scott also hosts The Business On Purpose Podcast and can be found at mybusinessonpurpose.com.