The Benefits of Becoming a "Conscious Company"
Tony E. Kula (CEO) / October 2019 / Conscious Company
Every for-profit business is sustained by one thing. The clue is in their name: Profit.
But at some point, every business (and respectively, their Founder) reaches a certain stage where they should ask: “Is there more to it than profit?”
Thankfully, there’s an organisation designed to answer that exact question.
A few weeks ago at the end of September, I had the pleasure of attending the sold out Conscious Capitalism European Conference (CCEC) here in Berlin. Everyone from ambitious young professionals to seasoned leaders attended to share a different way to approach business. One that’s not just centred around profits, but people, planet and purpose too.
One example was Whole Foods CEO John Mackey, who gave a presentation on “Leading with love”. He noted that while businesses are the best value creators in the world, they should be motivated by something higher. By channelling the tenets of Conscious Capitalism, businesses can be fuelled by a drive to give back, improve our world, and create the good.
It almost sounds too good to be true. You might be wondering: Can a business have a conscious impact without sacrificing profits at all? Thanks to meeting the conference’s organisers Meike Nittel and Dr. Jan Bellermann some months ago here on LinkedIn, I think we can. When I heard about Conscious Capitalism, it resonated with me so strongly that I offered to partner with the conference organizers. We created a “Hybrid Event” which used MEETYOO’s event platform to digitise the CCEC, enabling the event’s message to spread outside the conference room and across the world very conveniently.
While CCEC was an overwhelming success, this impactful event is just one of the many we’re hoping to run. Personally, I believe our digital event platform can (and should) be used to do good. We want to get our technology in the hands of people with real purpose, who can enact change. With that in mind, it’s time to take MEETYOO to the next level in becoming a more conscious company. Today I want to share how we’re making that transformation, while showing you that conscious impact doesn’t have to come at the cost of business growth.
Building A Conscious World
What does being a Conscious Capitalist actually mean?
Businesses have immense potential for impact. Capitalism is perhaps the single biggest driver behind many of the economic, cultural and political forces shaping our world. But it goes without saying that the Capitalist force can be used for better… or for worse.
Business leaders and entrepreneurs all start their journey for different reasons. But at some point, we must mature. We must evolve past profits. We must make the decision to use our impact for the better. In my view, truly successful businesses aren’t simply operating to grow. They’re conscious too. Take Whole Foods: Not only are they generating huge value as part of Amazon’s ecosystem, they ensure they’re doing good by using the Conscious Capitalism model.
The best part about Conscious Capitalism? There’s no contradiction. You can still run a profitable business while being a conscious company. People, the planet and your purpose can coexist alongside profits.
So how exactly does this work?
Conscious Capitalism exists under four key tenets. They form the foundation of conscious companies.
Tenet 1: Higher Purpose
Businesses should exist beyond the profits they make. Having a higher purpose makes that possible. Conscious Capitalism starts by asking yourself: “WHY does our business exist? If we succeed, what positive impact will we create?” Knowing your purpose makes profit a means to achieving that end, rather than the end itself.
At MEETYOO, our higher purpose starts with our vision and mission. Our vision is to empower global communities to share information in the most convenient way. How? We C.O.D.E: Creating Outstanding Digital Events.
Beyond our vision & mission, we’re conscious about the natural resources we consume. Physical events can be costly for things such as travelling air miles; MEETYOO makes sure we’re acting responsibly by offering a digital solution that’s sustainable across the long term.
Tenet 2: Stakeholder Orientation
Businesses don’t just serve customers. They serve an ecosystem of stakeholders. These could be your suppliers, investors, local community, or (of course) your staff.
Conscious businesses care for everyone in their ecosystem. It means that everyone in the value chain influences the decisions the company makes in some form.
At MEETYOO, we’re conscious of the 3 key stakeholders that we create value for: Our clients, their event attendees, and the MEETYOO team.
- Our clients want to improve their message’s reach, accessing previously unavailable markets.
- Their event attendees want practical information that will support their company and careers, along with the powerful connections events typically provide.
- Finally, the MEETYOO team want to be proud of the company they work for, and a product they care about building.
- We take action to create value in a socially conscious way, so that all parties are not just happy, but truly fulfilled.
Tenet 3: Conscious Leadership
Conscious leaders realise that their business isn’t really about them, but they’re playing an important part in this global operation to create sustainable change.
The leadership also ensures the company meets tenets 1 and 2: That the company stays focused on its higher purpose, and is creating value for all key stakeholders.
MEETYOO might start with “me”, but it’s really about “we”. We put the team first by leading by example. The management team and I make sure to create the space for our amazing team to thrive. It means
Our company couldn’t be anything without our amazing management staff and MEETYOO team. That means our leadership team must lead by example to create the space for our staff to excel. It means allowing growth through failure. It means being grateful for effort, regardless of outcome. And it means making staff feel comfortable asking tough questions, getting the feedback they dearly need and, ultimately, keep growing.
Tenet 4: Conscious Culture
There’s more to leading than applying strategies, tools and business methods. We can in fact be conscious, too. Making our staff feel seen and heard. Listening more than we talk. Leaving them not only with answers, but questions too. These dynamic shifts all culminate in one final tenet: Creating a conscious culture.
Having all 3 previous tenets of purpose, stakeholder and leadership aligned unlocks this final piece. Conscious cultures are the heartbeat of successful businesses: they run through everything they do.
For MEETYOO, our culture extends across our product, to our team and finally the impact we have.
Digital events allow us to be conscious about our long term sustainability. This is powered by our team who are supported with appreciation, positivity, transparency and trust. It is this very combination that empowers us to bring global communities together, and help them share information in the most convenient way. Ultimately, it is conscious culture that creates lasting change for the better.
A Commitment To Consciousness
While the Conscious Capitalism conference is over, MEETYOO’s journey towards becoming conscious is just getting started.
Embracing this new mode of business enables us to grow and be profitable, while engaging with our people, planet, and higher purpose. I’m incredibly excited to see how this develops!
The future isn’t solely about connection, but co-creation too. We’re all stewards of the same planet, and ultimately are on this journey together.