Can Higher Purpose Help Your Team Survive and Thrive?

A conversation with Twitter’s Niki Lustig about how the social media giant fosters a sense of purpose among their employees.

Niki Lustig, a leader of the Learning and Organizational Development team at Twitter.

A study published last year in Psychological Science suggests that having a sense of purpose can literally add years to your life. This raises an interesting question: if employees feel that their work has purpose, might that add years to the life of their organization?

Given that the life expectancy of organizations has precipitously declined over the past 20 years, this question isn’t just an academic one. In fact, more than 50 percent of new business in the United States now close their doors within four years. Employers need to find effective ways to help their organizations survive and for their employees to thrive in their roles at work.

This is where purpose comes in. Simply put, having a sense of purpose in your job means that you feel that your work makes positive contributions to the world, beyond earning yourself a paycheck or improving your company’s bottom line—you feel a commitment to something bigger than yourself.

A 2007 study published by the Journal of Occupational Health Psychology suggests that managers can effectively boost the work experience and well-being of their employees by helping them connect to a job-related higher purpose.

What’s more, there…