The Strategy of Purpose

Strategy fit

Business is always a success when you have a strategy. But it is even more guaranteed when that strategy is based on success. Michael Porter is considered to be the great strategist of modern times and he always emphasis on a strategy fit. What he means by that is if you have a loose strategy and it might be even a successful one, then the competitor can copy it easily and make similar strategy. The competitor may not make a lot of money using that, but you are sure to lose a lot of money.  So his suggestion is to form a strategy fit which cannot be copied by other people.

Now there is another person called Nikos Mourkogiannis. He has a very interesting view that says one must attain his strategy through a purpose and if that happens, the alignment between strategy and purpose itself is a fit and it can’t be duplicated. Even worse, if duplicated the competitor is sure to fail. He quotes a man named Clausewitz who is considered to be the inventor of modern strategy who said “The best of the best Strategy is useless, unless it serves a higher purpose”.

The capital P purpose and a small p purpose

Nikos says there are two types of purposes exists in modern corporate world. One is the Purpose with the capital P, which is the overall purpose of the company or organization. And then there is a purpose with a small p which is denoted as the purpose of individuals who are integral part of the organization. Both has to be integrated to get the maximum benefit from the purpose – strategy fit.

The Purpose with a capital P

Nikos identifies four main capital P Purposes that can define any company. They are

Purpose of Heroism:

The company which dares to do something drastically different. Companies like Ford, Microsoft and Apple. They dream and wish their products to be on every household. As ford mass produced cars and try to put his car in every garage and as how Microsoft wanted to put personal computers on every desktop is a heroic purpose which enabled them to form their own strategy.

Purpose of Discovery:

The company which is initiated on a random idea and grows building upon the idea will have this purpose. Companies like Google can be sited as a best example for this category. The idea of gathering world information on one place for anyone can retrieve is a great idea which helped them to strategize their business.

Purpose of Excellence:

The company or institution which would like to serve as a guide or compass and to show the path to larger mass can be associated with this purpose. Many publishing houses, educational institutions can be sited as an example to this. This very purpose can help them to form the most useful strategy.

Purpose of Altruism:

The company or agency which is having a purpose to serve people can be put into this category of purpose. Walmart or hardware supplier chains like True value can be identified with this purpose. This very purpose help them to form their strategy.

The Purpose with the small p

Nikos then goes to categorize people’s purpose into four categories which he calls them the purpose with small p. He cites he has taken this cue from Carl Jung, who packaged Plato and has put human personalities into four basket. Nikos says like companies and organisation people should have a sense of purpose too. When that sense of individual purpose gets aligned with the big purpose of the companies then the strategic fit happens. The four small purpose p’s are

Purpose of Warriors:

These people are all about problem solving. They need a big problem to solve and a big heroic purpose to serve.

Purpose of Magicians

These people think and do things that were thought impossible by many. They find many hidden treasures and bring them to the vision of large mass or group of people

Purpose of Sovereign:

These people feel they have a moral responsibility for providing good direction and information to people and help the other people to become a great success.

Purpose of Lovers:

These people live to serve others. They go out of their way to help and please people. These people are extremely important for others who lack social skills.

Now the integration should happen. The one law of integration is the two components which are to be integrated should work well on their own, else it will diminish the effectiveness of integration. This phenomenon is called as Synergy. Now when the following happens it is a great integration.

In this way a company can find and form a strategy when it is clear on its purpose. There are three things every purpose given above should follow and it has to let go of certain things to be effective. Reach us to know what are those things.


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