Maybe you stumbled upon The Motley Fool online back in the '90s and helped us build the largest community of individual investors ever assembled. At that time, we were a company with an unserious name and a noble purpose: To Educate, Amuse, and Enrich.
Not every company is purpose-driven, but The Motley Fool is -- as are many of the companies we admire. Whole Foods, Southwest Airlines, and Google come to mind.
To understand what it means to be a purpose-driven company, we look to Roy Spence, who wrote that a company's purpose is "a definitive statement about the difference you are trying to make in the world. ... It's your reason for being that goes beyond making money..."
Roughly eight years ago, we revisited this idea and, after much introspection, decided The Motley Fool's purpose would become To Help the World Invest—Better.
It made a lot of sense for us at the time and served us excellently. But by 2018, our company had grown quite a bit and added a number of new ventures with new possibilities that convinced us we now had a broader purpose.
So, here we are, more than 25 years since The Motley Fool was founded, revisiting our purpose and returning to our roots. We asked ourselves, what happens after you've educated, amused, and enriched? What does the world look like?
[Insert a drumroll here.]
The new purpose statement of The Motley Fool is: To Make the World Smarter, Happier, and Richer.
The most important word in our purpose statement may surprise you. It's "and."
While other companies try to make the world smarter, happier, or richer, we aim to do all three.
Smarter: By sharing our expertise as a leader in long-term investing, entrepreneurialism, workplace culture, and more -- in a way that is approachable and jargon-free.
Happier: By being a voice of optimism and community builders of like-minded people who enjoy learning together.
And Richer: In the most literal sense, by providing guidance that helps people manage their financial resources, but also by enabling them to live a more fulfilling, richer life, beyond their assets.
When we are at our very best, we are making our world smarter, happier, and richer. Never one without the other two; never two without the third.
We look forward to exploring in the coming years how our purpose can be put to work serving our members, building our community, and helping the world. Thank you for joining us on this journey.
Tom and David Gardner