I met a company in London a few months ago - they provide a service to help businesses and consumers transfer funds internationally (kind of a 'Western Union' I guess?). We talked for 90 mins about what they did and the challenges of uniting their existing business with a newly acquired company under a single brand and a set of newly created values.
After a while I said to their HR Director, "You don't do international money transfers - that's not your business".
"Erm, I think you'll find that's exactly what we do," he said, somewhat perplexed.
"You don't," I said, "Your business is helping retirees to buy retirement homes in Provence and entrepreneurs to set up paddle boarding businesses in Newquay. And it's helping parents whose son or daughter has been mugged in Laos to get money to them as quickly and as easily as possible. THAT'S what you do".
"I've never thought about it like that before," he said.
And it's why the guy sitting outside his door will stay 20 mins or an hour behind on a Friday evening while his pint slowly warms in a local bar. Not because he thinks doing money transfers is great craic, but because he knows at there's a human being at the other end - someone he is helping.
THAT'S why he stays behind.
It's only one part of the puzzle but it's a fundamentally important one that underpins everything else you do.
So why do you do what you do? Why would your staff stay on on a Friday evening while their beer's getting warm?
It's certainly worth having a think about.