Last week I had the privilege to lead the LegalWorks team in winning an award in Breakit Impact Challenge where 430 dedicated companies battled side by side, work-shopped and challenged each other in tweaking business models, aiming to make an impact and fighting climate change.
Signing up for this Impact challenge, I received some unsolicited input on how “100 companies are responsible for 70% of global green house gas emissions since 1988” and that “I should know better than to waste my time re-arranging the deck chairs of the Titanic”.
I would argue that even though the first statement may actually be true, the second one is definitely not, and with values like that you will have a hard time attracting top talent in 2019.
Where the top talent goes – growth and innovation follows- and so does the further development of business and society.
You see, the pride and immense joy that the LegalWorks team felt on winning Breakit Impact Challenge, is in complete alignment with the current global tendencies on social entrepreneurship and value driven talent. Making an impact, working together and being a force for good, is the new currency and a marker of success. Climbing the corporate ladder, getting a large bonus check, fancy titles and buying expensive suits are not. Instead they are increasingly considered quaint left overs from old corporate ways – starting in the times of the last industrial revolution and ending now, in the new digitized, green and meaningful era.
Today’s talents are as concerned with making a positive impact on the world as they are with making money.
According to a Forbes article, 94% of the American work-force want to use their skills to benefit a cause. The same holds true in other parts of the world; Deloittes Global Millennial Survey 2019, states that young talents are increasingly worried about climate change and the overall state of the world. They will support and work for companies that align with their values and they will not hesitate to lessen or end relationships when they disagree with them, or companies’ business practices. Having nicely worded policies is nothing – implementing and living them for real is everything.
Much in the same way, LegalWorks survey from X to Next, measuring generations specific values wants and needs among lawyers, shows that family security, fairness and equality are the most important values for all four generations currently active on the labor market. Hedonistic values such as making the big money and having an exciting life style – don’t even make top of list.
Against this backdrop, it’s not surprising that social enterprise has taken off as a new formula for success, combining capitalism with being a force-for-good. Today an increasing number of companies are on a mission to save the planet and tackle global issues such as alleviating hunger, improving education, equality and combatting climate change. In my opinion this a very welcome development and hopefully it also marks the rise of the green, meaningful economy.
I firmly believe that all change begins with one person -and it has to be you – it has to be me – joining forces and saving the planet one green choice and one fair action at a time. Let us leave the expensive suits, with their old fashioned remarks, to busy themselves with re-arranging the deck chairs of those 100 companies responsible for 70 % of the carbon foot-print. Innovation and growth will not happen there anymore.