What the Canadian Government Can Learn From Top Business Leaders

Since 1867 “Peace, Order and Good Government” (POGG) has been Canada’s constitutional mandate. While this may have been a good mandate at Confederation, it’s no longer relevant today.

POGG suggests that Canadians’ core “Purpose” is to be peaceful, orderly citizens who serve our government. Yawn! What a boring, uninspiring and bureaucratic message.

I don’t know about you, but I believe the role of government is not to demand service from its citizens, but to be a force for good that serves its people. Canadians deserve a Purpose that will help our people and Country to realize our true potential.

Just like an evolving company needs to both determine its Purpose and revisit it periodically, our Country needs to reconsider its core reason for being. We need a positive new Purpose statement that is accurate, powerful and inspiring for the greatest number of Canadians.

The American mantra of “Life, Liberty and The Pursuit of Happiness” clearly defines the American philosophy to strive to succeed and be the best they can be. While it suits Americans, it’s not appropriate for the more socially minded Canadian psyche.

“Liberty, Equality, Fraternity” is the national motto of France. It clearly communicates a way of being for the citizens of their country.

A Powerful Purpose Increases Team Engagement, Action and Results

The world’s top business leaders harness the power of their organization by crafting a powerful Purpose that inspires, motivates and guides their team.

A Purpose is an organization’s mantra, philosophy, creed, essence or core reason for being. It is a philosophy that unites teams, so they work together to produce amazing results.

Organizations that are “On Purpose™” are forces to be reckoned with. Their team members work in alignment and produce powerful results – almost magically optimizing their talent and energy.

It is the leader’s responsibility to align the organization around a powerful purpose and then build a strategic plan to live it. Prime Minister Trudeau has the power to call our leaders to craft such a plan.

If he truly wants to effect positive change, Mr. Trudeau should assemble a multi-disciplinary, cross representative team of leaders from government, business and NGOs to develop our Country’s purpose. Like any successful leader does, he would work with them to create a positive, shared strategic plan for the people of our great Country.

Any business leader worth their salt can attest that a plan is more likely to succeed when the leader assembles the team to inspire and craft it. This team approach significantly increases engagement, commitment, responsibility, action and RESULTS!

A Proposal for a New Canadian Purpose

There will be much discussion in the coming weeks and months about Prime Minister Trudeau’s leadership and intended direction for Canada. Beginning with a strong Purpose, developed with the people of Canada.

If Mr. Trudeau were to ask me, I’d suggest “Peace, Power and Prosperity” for Canada’s national Purpose:

  • Peace; from both a military and an individual’s perspective. We all desire personal, family, community and global Peace.
  • Power; like money or “The Force” can be used for good or evil, we need Power to achieve results. When we surround Power with Peace and Prosperity, it will be a force for good.
  • Prosperity; all humans strive to attain a sustainable, prosperous life and planet. A prosperous person has wealth, happiness and health.

Canada has the potential to be a shining example. Our citizens have gathered here from across the world to live in peace and use their power to produce prosperity.

Prime Minister Trudeau can learn from what the greatest business leaders do. He could assemble a multi-disciplinary team to align around an inspiring Purpose and craft a collaborative strategic plan to help Team Canada achieve our vast potential.

What about you? What would you suggest for Canada’s Purpose? Please share your comments below.


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