Passion, Purpose and Persistence. Building resilience with the 3Ps
There have been countless articles posted about Passion, Purpose and Persistence (3Ps) and why they are important traits for successful businesses. As always, there are no certainties in this world, having the 3Ps does not mean you are guaranteed success, however, if you don’t have the 3Ps, you are almost guaranteed to fail.
In my opinion, having the 3Ps is a prerequisite if you are going to start and run a successful business. The challenge should not be about obtaining the 3Ps, instead, it should be about how to maintain it and have control over it.
Maintaining the 3Ps
I am not going to go into why passion, purpose and persistence are important. Instead, I want to talk about how to maintain and harness these elements so we can all give ourselves the best possible chance of success.
Many startups are born from an idea which the founder is passionate about. This is all very well and good however, what if that passion wanes over the years?
We need to ask ourselves how we can sustain and harness this passion. From my own experience, the two drivers that have helped me sustain my passion for my work is to meet my peers and clients and talk about how I can help them. Knowing I am able to help has always allowed me to stay passionate about my work. The other driver is taking a break from everything to recharge my batteries. In other words, stay fresh and find ways to remind yourself why you were passionate about this in the first place.
Passion can also be a double-edged sword. In the past (and probably in the future) my passion has given me an unhealthy stubborn streak. By letting my passion control me, I would often become obsessed with projects I am involved in and believe I am always right and the only person who can do things in the correct way. This can have disastrous consequences!
To truly harness your passion, I believe a growth mindset needs to be developed. Talk to your team, friends and relatives about your passion and take in their perspectives, let them help you and be ready to consider your ideas may require more thinking through before they work.
One of the great things about having a passion is that it gives you a purpose. Purpose is also subjective, different people have different goals. We should all agree that having a purpose is important. If you do not know your purpose, your business may not have a direction. Every business in the world needs to generate revenue and profits, so these should be viewed as a result and not the purpose.
Assuming people reading this have already worked out their purpose, the challenge again is how you can harness your purpose to make your business more resilient. My view is that your purpose should be an aspiration and a never ending road. Daunting as this may sound, it is the very thing which keeps me passionate and gives me the resilience to tackle difficult challenges.
As a rule, each of our projects has to align to our purpose. I have found this rule particularly useful as it gives all our staff a stake in this purpose. From there, every member of staff working on the different projects will be able put together a work process in place to give each project a reasonable chance of success.
Having these processes in place has also allowed the business to be more resilient as we are able to understand through data analysis whether we need to change the way we work.
One of my earliest working experiences was when I was still at university. I worked for a charity in Edinburgh where I was given a copy of the yellow pages (in case you are too young to know what this is) and made cold calls to businesses for donations. I recall having a very rigid script and it would take over 50 calls before anyone donated.
Persistence perhaps is the hardest to achieve of the 3Ps. It could be making sales to generate revenue, getting funding from investors or even getting your colleagues to buy into your passion and purpose. In the end, this is a lesson in handling rejection.
Persistence should not be about doing the same thing over and over (like I did in Edinburgh), it is about learning why you have been rejected and changing the way you do things with the next opportunity.
Passion, Purpose and Persistence for Resilience
In the end the 3Ps is really about developing your resilience, and perhaps this is the real reason why they are so important and need to be maintained. Next time you talk or read about the 3Ps, perhaps you can think about how this can make your business more resilient through a Growth Mindset, Stringent Work Processes and Continuous Learning.