CHAPTER 9Why Seemingly Sane People Resist Noble Purpose

Never compare your inside to everyone else's outside.

—Anne Lamott, writer

At this point, you may be thinking, Noble Purpose sounds great. But what about …

  • My CEO
  • The board
  • My boss
  • Marge in accounting
  • Phil in marketing
  • Our purchasing department
  • Our tenured sales reps

The list goes on.

Whenever I speak about Noble Purpose, someone inevitably comes up to me afterward and says, “I love this, but my company will never go for it.” The person then proceeds to explain why his or her money‐driven boss doesn't care about “stuff like this,” or the person will say, “The people in my company are too intellectual” (or overeducated, or undereducated, or power‐hungry, or disengaged) “to get into this.”

The truth is, we don't know what's inside another person's heart unless they tell us.

I've seen seemingly uncaring CEOs light up at the thought that their lives and their organizations could become something more meaningful than a balance sheet. And I've watched salespeople all over the world become passionate about jobs they once thought were only about the money.

Having said that, not everyone responds positively at first.

Claiming your NSP out loud means you'll encounter questions and perhaps even some naysayers. Sometimes people are initially resistant simply because they're using the mental frames and language they've grown accustomed to. Their approach to their work is a reflection of the way they've been trained. For example, ...

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