Feels like Business is being yanked toward a threshold from all sides these days —
the ‘Global Digital Demos’ is pushing to have its collective interests honored, for the environment and social justice — while the global financial structure groans with the weight of internal rot.
Drip by drip the SoulBranding℠ System has been guiding the most forward-thinking organizations to a mutual-benefit solution for business and society since the late 1990s.
Finally, today, necessity has pushed those trends into the mainstream. Most all businesses are grasping to bridge the double chasm to stakeholder trust and sustained commercial relevance. Individuals are scrambling, too, for an immediate toehold on their livelihood, and some insight into how to thrive in the future.
The answer is not to invest in incremental gestures like cause-marketing, or follow-the-numbers-for-global-standards set for reporting on your good citizenship, and certainly not to jump on the Purpose-Branding Bandwagon.
The answer is to transform. To unleash the higher angels on your team: the human values that move your employees to innovate with the joy of doing the right thing for the business, for society, and for their own full expression as social beings.
And then support them as the inspired leader who you are: with incentives, training, cross-silo objectives – and your explicit mandate for systemic wellbeing, at all levels. That’s personal, organizational, your ecosystem, community, the whole living system.
Yes, you can do that profitably. We’re starting a blog today documenting how, and illustrating with others’ progress for the next 52 weeks. It’s emergent. We’re all in this thing called the living system together, learning as we go. Meanwhile, some basics:
Five Things to Start With
1. Stabilize life-support systems. Focus on what’s needed and wanted by your immediate stakeholders now. Ask them.
2. Find a new guru: You. We need to crack open the right side of our techno-addled business brains for radically fresh insights, wisdom and good judgment that supports systemic wellbeing, including but beyond financial performance.
3. Stop the heat loss. Integrate silo-ed CSR/Sustainability and Innovation initiatives into your core business strategy. Find where one can accelerate the other. Merge them around your people’s values system.
4. Boost the systems capacity to innovate. Quickly. Flexibly. And stay that way, it’s going to be a long, uncertain road to recovery in the global economy.
5. Renovate the organization, starting with the Corporate Marketing Function, to profitably deliver (not talk about) what’s wanted and needed by society that the organization alone can deliver in the manner they most want and need it. Discover the social, human values that personally energize your people. It’s got to be real, and spontaneous. From the inside of each employee’s heart and soul out to the community, to the marketplace, to investors, to the talent pool. Challenge your Board to hold you accountable for delivering on the stated and implied “Promise” of the organization (as stakeholders interpret that Promise). And challenge them to empower you to deliver for long term outcomes. Treat your own sense of humanity and #TheGoldenRule as the ‘gateway drugs’ to your organization’s generative love affair with the Web of Life.