What does it mean to be a business driven with purpose or by values? The old school notion that maximising business profits is mutually exclusive to providing societal or environmental benefit is increasingly being challenged by new models of business. A rise of consumer power brought about by the internet, means consumers can choose to shop online from anywhere across the globe – and if they don’t like how a business behaves they can name and shame on social media. As a result, we are seeing a shift in corporate cultures and a reimagining of the role of brands and organisations to balance profit with purpose.
In this event we’ll be exploring:
- What is purpose driven business?
- Do your clients, customers and team really care whether your driven by purpose?
- What’s involved in becoming a B Corporation?
- What other models and theories exist (such as Triple Bottom Line reporting)
- How can you identify your business purpose and put it into practice?
This event is hosted in partnership with Bank Australia.
Ed McManus - CEO, Powershop Australia & Meridian Energy Australia
Beginning his career as a medical research scientist, Ed then spent several years working for one of the world’s largest pharmaceutical companies, GlaxoSmithKline. This was followed by a move into the media industry, working for realestate.com.au in roles across sales and marketing, operations, and pricing strategy.
Ed then made the decision to do something that would positively impact the future of his children’s lives and sought out an opportunity in the renewable energy space. This led to his leap to Powershop, ranked by Greenpeace as Australia’s greenest energy company (2014 & 2015).
Powershop gives customers transparency and control over their energy and now powers more than 80,000 households and businesses from across Victoria and New South Wales. Ed is excited by the challenge of trying to make a connection with customers in an industry where trust is currently low. But it’s also the idea of being a part of a business that strives to have a positive impact on the future of the planet that pushes him daily.
Jane Kern - Corporate Affairs Senior Consultant, Bank Australia
Jane is a consultant in Bank Australia’s Corporate Affairs team, which is responsible for the bank’s engagement and communication with staff and customers as well as its public policy commitments. Jane works on the bank’s positions on climate change and renewable energy, along with its reconciliation action plan and financial inclusion action plan.
Jane has a background in sustainability and communications, having most recently worked with BASE, a Swiss foundation focused on driving investment in sustainable energy. Jane holds a Master in Sustainable Development and Bachelors in Business and Communications.
Ben Bowler - CEO, World Weavers
Ben is a serial entrepreneur with a background in sales and marketing. In 2006 he and his wife Jildou moved to Thailand to volunteer along the Thai-Burma border. In 2008 together they founded Blood Foundation, a local NGO focusing on education projects along the border and advocacy. In 2008 Ben founded the innovative Monk for a Month temple-stay program in Chiang Mai province offering men and women from around the world the opportunity to experience Thai temple life and temporary ordination. In 2010 Ben launched Muslim for a Month in Turkey offering guests first-hand experience of Turkish Islam and Sufism, underneath the spiritually inclusive banner of Rumi. In 2011 he launched World Weavers, a brand that today operates spiritual immersion programs in Tibetan India, Nepal, Cambodia and Ethiopia. In October 2015 at the Parliament of World' Religions he launched 1GOD.com, an online platform aimed at countering religious fundamentalism, relativism and western materialism.
Ben is a Social-Entrepreneur-in-Residence at the prestigious INSEAD business School and a blogger for the Huffington Post.
Mark Paterson - Principal, Currie Communications
Mark is principal of Currie Communications, a proudly-certified B Corporation - a for-purpose company that uses the power of business to solve social and environmental problems. The company is on a mission to assist leaders in business, science, government and the community make sense of complex issues, engage influential stakeholders and tell stories that inspire positive change. Finding ways to save threatened species, create vibrant economies or empower resilient communities starts with a conversation. Currie has been connecting people in conversations about sustainable development for 25 years.