Does your business have a Preamble?
Updated: Jan 26, 2022
As we are celebrating the Repulic day today, I reflected on its significance. Today is the day that India adopted the Constitution and transitioned into a republic. The Preamble of the Constitution captures aspirations and dreams of the people of the country. The founding fathers of the nation spent a lot of time to debate, discuss and agree on what these aspirations are, and what would be the best way to express them in the Constitution.
This picture is of the original Preamble of the Constitution of India. Reading it gives one goose bumps - to see the intent for "We the people of India."
Was it really necessary to create the Constitution and its Preamble? I think this quote from Dr. B.R. Ambedkar helps clarify: “Humans are mortal. So are ideas. An idea needs propagation as much as a plant needs watering. Otherwise both will wither and die.”
The idea of India therefore needed to be captured in words, in a document. The idea needed to be articulated, discussed, debated and agreed to. So that the present as well as the future generations would be able to move together in solidarity.
The country needed this clarity. Now the question is: Do you have a Preamble for your business? Articulation provides clarity and cohesion to your team. Companies typically have a mission statement and a vision statement, which one could say is similar to the Preamble of the Consitution. When an entrepeneur is first starting off, "the Preamble" is unstated. It is, instead, reflected in the decisions and choices made by the entrepreneur. This serves the entrepreneur just fine, as long as they are the only ones who need to take decisions. The moment the team grows or they need to explain their motives to others, the need for clear articulation becomes vitally important. The articulation of "Why are we doing what we are doing."
Often, the answer is simply, "I felt like doing it." There is a struggle to explain precisely, "Why?" The enterprise is, after all, an expression of the entrepreneur's drives, and in most cases, people have not made an effort to express these drives in words. There is power in clarity.
In LEC, we have a process for first discovering your personal WHY. We call it the Golden Vibe. The Golden Vibe resonates in the organisation's ethos as well, naturally, since this personal WHY is what drove all of the decisions made by the entrepreneur right from the very beginning. Once the Golden Vibe is articulated, one gets to reflect on the Organisation's Purpose and this sits at the core of everything else that happens in the organisation - from the business strategy and the people who get attracted to the organisation to its values and culture. A clear articulation of the Organisation's Purpose provides clarity and therefore direction to the team, helping them take decisions, thus enabling the entrepreneur and the team to be more liberated.