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THE PURPOSE EFFECT, a book by author Dan Pontefract
THE PURPOSE EFFECT: Building Meaning in Yourself, Your Role and Your Organization is the second book from Dan Pontefract, focusing on the importance of purpose.
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Dan Pontefract combines years of experience and research on employee engagement, behavior and culture to create a work about the three crucial areas of purpose: personal, organizational and workplace role.


If all three can come to fruition–if there is a positive interconnection between the three distinct definitions of purpose–the benefits should be felt by employees, teams, the organization, customers, and perhaps most importantly, society as a whole.


We can refer to this balanced state as the sweet spot.” When one area is lacking or ignored the results range from disengagement, apathy, lack of growth and even bankruptcy.


The Purpose Effect is aimed at both leaders and employees who wish to achieve a purpose mindset on a personal level, for the organization where they are employed and in their role at work, too.


A business leader that is committed to purpose will create purpose for the organization. An employee that feels his/her personal sense of purpose is being fulfilled at work will be an invaluable asset to productivity and success.


An organization centered on purpose will benefit every stakeholder, from employees to society in general. This “sweet spot” of purpose creates a reciprocal relationship between all three areas, and sits at the center of Pontefract’s work.


Now in paperback!


Download Chapter 1 for free.



Order The Purpose Effect by clicking below

Now in paperback


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“A compelling thesis on how purpose can drive not only personal fulfillment but also lead to more stable, cohesive and higher performing organisations. The Purpose Effect is a must read for any who doubt the impact of purpose on organisational stability and performance.”

  • Paul Polman, Chief Executive Officer, Unilever


“Purpose has never been more important in the world. If the workplace is truly going to be 100% human, it has to start with purpose, for individuals and for the organisation. Dan Pontefract takes you on a journey on how to make this a reality for yourself and your organisation.”

  • Jean Oelwang, President and Trustee, Virgin Unite


“Dan Pontefract brings us back to the principles of purpose.The Purpose Effect helps professionals and leaders from all sectors know how to connect the dots between purpose and positive results.”

  • Don Tapscott, author, CEO of The Tapscott Group Inc., and Inaugural Fellow, Martin Prosperity Institute, Rotman School of Management


“As the sense of meaning in the corporate world continues to plummet, the shortage of clear and comprehensive thinking on solutions has become acute. Dan Pontefract rides to the rescue with The Purpose Effect, providing a well-argued and detailed framework for organizations and their people to find and maintain their purpose ‘sweet spot.’”

  • Roger L. Martin, author and Institute Director, Martin Prosperity Institute, Rotman School of Management


“Purpose mobilizes people in a way that profits alone never will. Dan Pontefract’s The Purpose Effect shows why and how, lifting the discussion of this crucial ingredient to a whole new level of clarity.”

  • Herminia Ibarra, The Cora Chaired Professor of Leadership and Learning, INSEAD and author of If You Act Like A Leader You Will Think Like A Leader


“With The Purpose Effect, Dan Pontefract addresses a key organizational and human challenge for today’s leaders. As Peter Drucker noted already in his early writings on management, the purpose and meaning that organizations convey are not only essential for economic performance but represent a key contribution to the coherence of society.”

  • Richard Straub, President of Peter Drucker Society Europe and Associate Director of EFMD


“Dan Pontefract provides a powerful framework to make work deeply fulfilling and productive for the most valuable members of the workforce, those that are purpose-oriented.”

  • Aaron Hurst, Chief Executive Officer, Imperative and author of The Purpose Economy


The Purpose Effect should become a go-to resource for all leaders who want to drive a purposeful and meaningful organizational culture. The ever-changing workplace demands direction for how to encourage people to live out their purpose; this book explains how to do so in a way that positively impacts the individual, workplace and overall organization.”

  • Meghan M. Biro, Founder and CEO, TalentCulture


“Individuals spend a significant majority of their adult lives at work. Looking in the mirror at the end of a day, month and year should result in recognition that the time investment has been worthwhile at a very human level. This requires intrinsic attention to purpose and meaning from each of us, individually, and as teams and communities. In The Purpose Effect Dan Pontefract shares years of wisdom for how to cultivate this “sweet spot” leading to more individual and organizational satisfaction and success.”

  • Karen Kocher, Chief Learning Officer, Cigna


“Building on the insights into organizational culture that he developed in Flat Army, Dan Pontefract takes us on a journey that explores one of the most fundamental questions of the ages: how do we make our lives matter? Through sharing his personal experiences and those of many others, Dan makes a compelling case for the need to align our personal values with those of the organizations where we choose to work and the roles we perform. The result is not only personal fulfilment, but also superior organizational performance and societal progress.”

  • Saul Klein, Dean & Lansdowne Professor of International Business at the Peter B. Gustavson School of Business, University of Victoria


“Dan Pontefract’s The Purpose Effect is a challenge to both the worker and the leader to find the winning trifecta–a combination of a personal sense of purpose, an organizational purpose and a role purpose.”

  • Dee Ann Turner, VP, Chick-fil-A and author of It’s My Pleasure


The Purpose Effect Scorecard is possibly the most valuable tool for any business leader picking up Dan Pontefract’s insightful book. Start with the end in mind:

  1. Know what you are going to measure to shift your organisation’s results;
  2. Decide what numbers you want to see on that scorecard; and
  3. Follow his advice to connect your organisation’s purpose with your employees’ purpose and role purpose to get there.”
  • Annalie Killian, partner at Alchemy, Creative Director at Spark Labs and Founder of Amplify Festival


“Brilliant, practical, inspiring. Higher Calling meets Daily To Dos and creates your awesome Sweet Spot. In The Purpose Effect, Dan Pontefract has delivered that sweet spot to you, simply, clearly, deliciously. Get this book now and lead, live and work on purpose, every day!”

  • Bill Jensen, author of Future Strong and Disrupt!


“The separation of personal purpose from our professional lives limits our perception of success. For leaders who want to understand how employee purpose impacts an organization, The Purpose Effect stands alone as a guiding instrument.”

  • Jeff Booth, Co-Founder, President and CEO of BuildDirect

“While educators are driven by passion, until we intentionally outline why we do our work, we won’t achieve our goals for every student in every school. The Purpose Effect offers a compelling rationale to define our purpose in ways that will increase our effectiveness both individually and collectively, and to hold ourselves accountable for what really matters.”

  • Stephanie Hirsh, Executive Director of Learning Forward


“Good things happen when people are connected with purpose. In The Purpose Effect, Dan Pontefract challenges both leaders and individuals to find their purpose and use their workplace to live it out.”

  • David Burkus, author of Under New Management and Associate Professor of Management at Oral Roberts University


The Purpose Effect is the reminder to everyone in your organization that good things happen when we work with purpose. Dan Pontefract’s challenge to all of us: determine your purpose and then watch how society can flourish.”

  • Peter Johnston, author of Negotiating with Giants


“In our quest to grow our careers, advance and develop our skills, we often forget the importance of purpose. The Purpose Effect is a wonderful book that reminds us how important it is to look within, and find purpose in our jobs, careers and organizations.”

  • Josh Bersin, HR Industry Analyst, Principal and Founder, Bersin by Deloitte


The Purpose Effect helps individuals and leaders connect the dots between the personal, professional, and organizational. Dan Pontefract makes a strong case that we shouldn’t check our core values in life at the office door.”

  • Adam Grant, Wharton professor and New York Times bestselling author of Give and Take and Originals


“We are at a momentous inflection point. Income inequality, plummeting levels of trust in major institutions, the disillusionment of a generation of young people and a sense that for many, the future is going to be less secure and predictable than the past are leading to a deep hunger for fresh ideas for a new social compact. The Purpose Effect presents a marvelous and optimistic approach to achieving this. For many who are discouraged by the emptiness of organizational life, this readable, practical guide is an antidote to disengagement and cynicism at work and in society. I am delighted to see such a powerful guide to how each of us can proactively take charge of making sure that our lives have meaning.”

  • Rita Gunther McGrath, Associate Professor,
    Columbia Business School and author of The End Of Competitive Advantage


“Dan Pontefract raises the discussion of purpose to the next level using his three category model with the “sweet spot,” looking at it holistically and its impact on individuals, organizations, and society as a whole. This book is loaded with examples that take it from what might seem as a nice-to-have, to a must-have in order to maximize impact, engagement, and contribution.”

    • Tony Bingham, President and Chief Executive Officer, Association for Talent Development (ATD)


“Hollywood and popular literature would lead you to believe that big business and a meaningful life don’t mix. Not so, says Dan Pontefract. When we align our purpose with that of our job and our organization, we can have, as Studs Terkel said, “astonishment rather than torpor…life rather than a Monday through Friday sort of dying.” Read The Purpose Effect to find your astonishment.”

    • Karie Willyerd, author of The 2020 Workplace and Stretch, Workplace Futurist, SAP SuccessFactors


“Engagement research is clear: people want to work for a purpose, not just a paycheck. The Purpose Effect should be required reading for anyone who wants to find and develop meaning in their life, their role, and throughout their company. A great read for anyone who is looking to get the most from their career and life.”

  • Kevin Kruse, New York Times bestselling author of Employee Engagement 2.0


“The separation of personal purpose from our professional lives limits our perception of success. In examining the benefits of uniting personal and professional with organizational purpose, Dan Pontefract has built a three-legged machine around the principles of purpose.”

  • Faisal Hoque, founder of SHADOKA, author of Everything Connects and Survive to Thrive


“As robotics, artificial intelligence and cheap computing power drive us towards a large disruption in the world of work, it is time to think of the question why do we work? The Purpose Effect tells us how to discover the answer in today’s context. The sweet spot lies at the intersection of one’s own purpose with the purpose of the organization and the purpose of the role we have.”

  • Abhijit Bhaduri, author and Chief Learning Officer, Wipro



“Thankfully, momentum is building against the “maximize shareholder value” mindset that has undermined the long-term health of so many companies and done so much damage to society. Dan Pontefract’s The Purpose Effect is sure to become an important part of this movement, for it makes abundantly clear that corporations—and all of their team members—are far happier and perform better when they remember that what they do affects customers, colleagues, the community and owners alike. As Dan shows, profit is actually higher, and certainly more sustainable, when it’s linked with purpose.”

  • Rick Wartzman, Senior Advisor, The Drucker Institute

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