Conscious Capitalism 2013: Conscious Capitalism is a Team Sport
“No one can whistle a symphony. It takes a whole orchestra to play it.”
~ H. E. Luccock
Business, like playing a symphony, is a team sport. It only works through ongoing interaction between the business and its customers, employees, vendors, and other stakeholders. As Ed Freeman observes, “business is the most successful form of human social cooperation ever created.”
So, what does this mean for us?
If we truly understand the cooperative nature of business and the essential interconnectedness and interdependence of the stakeholders in a business (and of the stakeholders in our overall business ecosystem or economy), then we can orient to business in a different way.
This recognition of interconnectedness and cooperation is the foundation of Conscious Capitalism. From this recognition comes an understanding that the purpose of a business is to create value (through whatever its products or services might be and through the process of creating and delivering those products and services) for its stakeholders and for the overall ecosystem.
By creating value for all of the stakeholders and engaging them in an authentic, respectful relationship, we cultivate loyalty, even love, for our company, our brands, our products and services.
As with all relationships, this is something we do together. It requires openness, curiosity, listening and responsiveness.
The sun is setting on the days of seeing the purpose of business as that of making money, and selling by manipulation and bombardment.
And how does this work?
Companies at the forefront of the Conscious Capitalism movement, like Patagonia, The Container Store, Whole Foods Market, The Motley Fool, and others, are strong, healthy and flourishing. Their employee engagement and customer loyalty are tremendous, and they are growing at industry-leading rates. They are perennial Best Places to Work, with extraordinary employee retention. Where the retail industry average employee turnover is 100%, The Container Store enjoys a 1% turnover rate and Wholes Foods Market a rate of under 10%.
While there is no definitive data, increasing evidence indicates that the financial performance of conscious businesses significantly surpasses their competitors and the overall market. As one indication, Russell Investment Groups’ assessment of the 100 Best Places to Work shows a 3 to 1 advantage to public companies that are Best Places to Work.
What is your role?
We are all part of the symphony of business. And whether you recognize it or not, you are part of the emerging Conscious Capitalism movement. Whether you run a business or work for one, you are affected by and influence the way the business operates. As customers, investors and community members we influence and are affected by businesses. You can play this role unconsciously, or you can play it evermore consciously.
On April 5th, 2013 at the Masonic Theater in San Francisco, leaders of the Conscious Capitalism movement will share their insights into how Conscious Capitalism works at Conscious Capitalism 2013. On Saturday April 6th, they and others will share best practices and skills to bring Conscious Capitalism to life for you in your various roles, through thirty-two 80-minute workshops.
Download the full schedule here. For more information about Conscious Capitalism 2013, visit the event web pages. And to register, go here.
It’s just good business!
About the author
Jeff Klein authored the newly released book It’s Just Good Business: The Emergence of Conscious Capitalism & the Practice of Working for Good - a concise introduction to Conscious Capitalism designed to be read in less than 30 minutes.
He is a trustee and executive team member of Conscious Capitalism, Inc. and producer of Conscious Capitalism 2013 and the 2013 Conscious Capitalism CEO Summit. He authored the award-winning book Working for Good: Making a Difference While Making a Living, and hosts a weekly radio program called It’s Just Good Business on en*theos radio.
For more information, visit workingforgood.com and consciouscapitalism.org