Book Review: A Culture of Purpose

By: Alexandra Kueller

Right off the bat in Christoph Lueneburger’s new book, A Culture of Purpose, you get a sense of how important sustainability is for businesses (hint: it’s really important). While the title and tag line of the book – “how to choose the right people and make the right people choose you” – might not indicate that the book will revolve around sustainability, but the book certainly does, and that in no way diminishes the power of the book. Lueneburger’s mission throughout the book is to show that sustainability holds the key to having a more resilient business.

Structured in four parts, A Culture of Purpose starts off at the core of a business: placing leaders with a purpose at the center. Then the book focuses on making sure that your company is acquiring the right talent. From there, Lueneburger goes on to discuss how to translate a culture of purpose into your organization, with the final section dedicated to moving forward and taking action.

In order to better communicate the message of sustainability in businesses, Lueneburger uses a multitude of anecdotes and in-depth interviews from CEOs to board members to chief sustainability officers. Herein lies the book’s greatest strength: it moves beyond the “what” and “how” of many business books to show you the “who.”

Sometimes an example Lueneburger uses in A Culture of Purpose does not have a direct correlation to sustainability. In fact, one of the first examples in the book was about a captain in the navy who used change leadership to bring his ship from one of the worst performing fleets in the navy to the most efficient. This is just one of many ways Lueneburger demonstrates that you do not have to be directly involved with sustainability to use sustainable principles to have your business thrive.

Despite being a business book, A Culture of Purpose reads more like a story. All too often business books can be dry from just giving you the “what” and “how,” or rather telling you what should be done. But with Lueneburger bringing the insight from professionals to the forefront, the “who” really makes the book not only informational, but enjoyable to read as well.