The Personal Enterprise... reaches beyond simple profit maximization as a reason to exist and sees profit as a means, not anend. It is a meaning maximizer, more than a profit maximizer. That is because it pursues and lives out a transcendent Purpose to meet human and societal needs (or finds its meaning) beyond just the provision of commercial goods and services. We call such an enterprise "Personal," because its work and efforts are first of all for people, or others, and not for its owners, and it understands itself in relationship to customers, employees, as well as the greater society, the environment, and future generations.
The Personal Enterprise... is focused on pursuing Purpose (or meaning) and authenticity in all it does. In other words, the business really IS what it says it is. It recognizes that it is no longer in control of marketing and messaging, because customers have been given more power by the internet and social media, and are increasingly making their collective voice heard. As businesses now pursue a "socially licensed Brand" - something which is granted by customers and employees as a result of a company's authentic and transparent behavior in pursuit of a Purpose they support. Customers also now assess the company’s Brand against its Culture: actions and intentions that the business declares to the marketplace, and not simply the crafted Brand promises which have constructed corporate images of the past.
The Personal Enterprise… is one that converses, listens, learns, imagines, innovates and collaborates with its people both internally (board, leadership, and employees) and externally (customers, clients and partners) toward continued expression of its Purpose.