Powered by Purpose, a United Way of Central Iowa community-based initiative, launched The Powered by Purpose Organizational Journey, a new online program helping businesses and nonprofits identify and more intentionally share their organization’s purpose.

The Powered by Purpose Organizational Journey is based on research that shows organizations with a stated purpose have increased employee engagement, brand loyalty, and company growth, among other benefits. Developed by United Way of Central Iowa, Navigate Wellbeing Solutions, ethOs – a division of Holmes Murphy, and Project Iowa, the Organizational Journey encourages organizations to engage a workgroup of current team members to complete the online program leading them to identify or clarify the organization’s purpose together.

The Journey includes a facilitator’s guide, instructional videos, several discovery activities and an online account for recording notes on workgroup discussions. Upon completing the program, teams will have an organizational purpose statement and ideas for activating purpose in the workplace.

"Studies on the importance of purpose for both organizations and individuals were already being published before the pandemic,” says Jessica Nelsen, Health & Well-Being Community Impact Coordinator for United Way of Central Iowa. “We’re seeing a trend now where job seekers are taking a closer look at workplace culture and choosing to work for organizations they feel are contributing to something bigger and that align with their own values.”

In the fall of 2020, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported 90% of employees would be willing to earn 23% less money to do work they believed had meaning. Additionally, a 2022 LinkedIn survey reported that 52% of candidates seeking employment stated they wouldn’t accept a job offer if they didn’t know – or didn’t agree with – a company’s mission, values, or purpose.

"Purpose significantly impacts overall Health and Well-Being, and according to the Gallop Well-Being Index, central Iowa is lagging in Purpose Well-Being," Nelsen says. “If more organizations in our community can identify and clearly state their purpose, they will attract the candidates who are most likely to connect with the job and engage with the organization’s overall mission. The result will be a healthier, more loyal workforce and an overall stronger community. It’s really a win-win for everyone.”

Register your organization for the Powered by Purpose Organizational Purpose Journey at: PoweredbyPurpose.org.


About Powered by Purpose

In 2020, United Way of Central Iowa introduced the Powered by Purpose initiative website with free digital resources and information focused on sharing the benefits of individual and organizational purpose. At that time, the Powered by Purpose Individual Journey, also a free online program, became available to individuals who wanted to explore their values and identify their purpose. The overall goal of the program is to help individuals and organizations understand the importance of purpose and the numerous health benefits of having a sense of meaning in life. Visit PoweredbyPurpose.org for more information, free resources and to sign up for the Organizational and Individual Purpose Journeys.

Topics: Health & Well-Being

Erin Drinnin

Written by Erin Drinnin

Erin Drinnin is United Way's former Community Impact Officer for Essential Needs and Health & Well-Being.