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  • September 16, 2020 3:28 PM | Kelly Chewning (Administrator)


    We hope the ‘back to school’ actually involves students returning to classrooms and that you found time to enjoy the warm temperatures and long, sunny days. The spring from after Labor Day to mid-November is another busy time for companies as  they complete one calendar year and prepare for the next. We are no exception to that rule as our focus is on company culture and the changes wrought by 2020, and remote work, pandemic economics and other factors.

    Culture is one of the four pillars of Conscious Capitalism and we have two discussions on tap. RSVPs are requested.

    Weds. Sept. 23rd - Raj Sisodia, Babson College professor and author of the book “Everybody Matters” and Bob Chapman, chairman/CEO of St. Louis, MO-based Barry-Wehmiller, a $2.5B global manufacturing business with 11,000 team members. Bob’s view of leadership is People-Purpose-Performance that creates an environment where employees are engaged and fulfilled.

    Thurs. Oct 1st – In conversation with Peggy Burns, associate dean at the Harvard Graduate School of Design, who is responsible for development and alumni. She has made “WorkplaceJoy” her mission and a hashtag as she tries to develop a connected workplace that encourages participation, inclusion, safety, curiosity, innovation and a sense of purpose.

    In the world premiere of the documentary “Beyond Zero,” first-time filmmaker Nathan Havey depicts the story of Ray Anderson, who built Interface, a successful carpet tile business. Havey has used Anderson’s story to teach business leaders to thrive by setting their sights beyond profit to solve humanity’s most pressing problems. Now an emerging leader in the global movement to evolve capitalism, Havey is eager to bring “The most important business story of the last 100 years” to contemporary audiences. Nathan Havey is writer director and his father, Jim Havey, is the producer.

    Following the screening, a virtual question-and-answer session will include director Nathan Havey, Erin Meezan, Vice President and Chief Sustainability Officer for Interface;” and Interface dream team member, and Paul Hawken, acclaimed environmentalist and Interface team member.

    Order your tickets today!

    A NEW VIEW OF ETHICAL INVESTING

    The 2020 summer of activism and calls for change surfaced some very interesting approaches, from new philanthropies aimed at restoring jobs in dense urban areas hit hard by Covid infections to a radical rethinking of college finance and delivery of higher education courses.

    This Marketwatch article adds another business as a driver of social change: instead of avoiding stocks or companies that are viewed negatively, turn the tables and look for places to invest for both financial, and community, gains. It was developed by Activest, an investment research and consulting firm created by former public finance and municipal bond executives, to better match places in need of capital with investors.

    One description calls it “fiscal justice investing” – shifting part of a nearly $4 trillion marketplace of states, cities, towns, water/sewer/drainage districts, schools, hospitals, transportation networks all competing for attention. The conservative pace of the “muni bond” world with thousands of local economies offers a range of credit risks and demographics but investors rarely know precisely where their money goes. Activest found examples in Chicago of funds being spent on insurance settlements and expenses. Where are you investing for impact?

    WELCOME NEW CORPORATE MEMBER

    TekDoc Solutions, a company of North Shore IT experts, is the latest corporate member to join Conscious Capitalism Boston. They specialize in security and reliability of IT platforms for financial and legal clients all over the Boston metro area.

    FOOD FOR THOUGHT

    September 13th was the 50th anniversary of Milton Frieman's seminal essay "The Business of Business" and the New York Times compiled opinions from economists, policy and business leaders. 

    As a contrast to the shareholder maximization operating philosophy, stakeholder capitalism continues to gain momentum. Check out this podcast to hear stories of businesses excelling when looking for win-win scenarios for all their stakeholders.

    UPCOMING EVENTS

    Conscious Culture Part I: Creating & Sustaining Caring Cultures on September 23rd at 2 EST

    Boston Film Festival: World Premiere of Beyond Zero on September 26th at 6:30 PM EST

    Conscious Culture Part II: Fostering a Joyful Work Environment on October 1st at 2 EST


  • August 16, 2020 3:07 PM | Kelly Chewning (Administrator)

    It may be the dog days of summer, but there are still plenty of happenings in our community! 

    One important part of building a Conscious Capitalism community is asking some challenging questions and encouraging honest answers. We understand that people and companies are recalculating in real-time to find new responses to 2020’s medical and economic upheaval, so we are hoping you’ll share what you can – advice, connections, resources. 

    Organization culture is a critical element in middle-market companies and can be difficult to change because of company history, growth and diversification. The challenges are magnified in today’s fluid crisis-mode as people juggle life’s demands, school, family etc. and you don’t see them in the workplace. How are you, or your company, ensuring that you can support and encourage people while ensuring they bring the organization ethos and culture?

    We’ve included a couple of links for ideas on the topic of Conscious Culture – one of the four key pillars – that will be a focus for upcoming live, discussions.

    Weds. Sept. 23rd - Raj Sisodia, Babson College professor and co-author of the book “Everybody Matters” with Bob Chapman, chairman/CEO of St. Louis, MO-based Barry-Wehmiller, a $2.5B global manufacturing business with 11,000 team members. Bob’s view of leadership is People-Purpose-Performance that creates an environment where employees are engaged and fulfilled.  

    Thurs. Oct 1st – Peggy Burns, associate dean at the Harvard Graduate School of Design, who is responsible for development and alumni will focus on fostering joy in the workplace. She has made “Workplace Joy” her mission and a hashtag as she cultivates connected workplaces that encourage participation, inclusion, safety, curiosity, innovation and a sense of purpose.

    ADVICE FOR EVOLVING WORKPLACE AND COMPANY CULTURES

    Work doesn’t just move to a new address when work-from-anywhere or connect with your team changes so dramatically. Workflows need buy-in to ensure they can shift and still achieve outcomes. Tasks need to be connected proactively – not just assumed that a handoff is smooth and completed. Participation needs to be active and encouraged. 

    On top of all that, positive, pro-active statements about new cultural norms need to be explained, or created anew as conditions require. This year, especially, support for national causes or international disaster relief have led companies to re-examine corporate donations and even making CEO statements on current events. Here are a couple examples:

    COVID Creates a Moment of Truth for Corporate Culture– an article from Bain & Co. on how workplace and company changed this year.

    Helping your Team Recharge Remotely During Pandemic- ideas from the Red Hat Enterprises Project.

    YOU CAN HELP IN MANY WAYS. 

    NEED HELP? WE'RE HERE FOR YOU. 

    We’re encouraging members and our community to help Conscious Capitalism sponsors whose stores are closed or very limited – here are a few ways can you assist:

    • Consider personal gifts of a future visit to a restaurant or movie, event etc to support the business. Some people bought a future meal or haircut to keep their favorite stylist, eatery or local retailers afloat.
    • Reach out to store managers to ask if their teams need additional support, extra work hours or days, if their people are struggling to earn enough.
    • Ask about their customer’s customer. Many restaurants like Boloco, or caterers such as Basil Tree Catering shifted their business model to do shorter open hours, home delivery or grocery sales. Those may have changed again as restrictions changed; so it makes sense to ask questions, and stay in touch to know the current needs and capabilities.
    • Offer to help by assisting with other resources from financial planning with workers to daycare or elder check-ins. Even if it’s not your company’s daily business, being a good neighbor counts these days. 

    Please email us ideas or your stories of helping out and supporting company culture.

    UPCOMING VIRTUAL EVENTS

    September 23rd at 2 PM EST: Conscious Culture Part I: Creating & Sustaining Caring Cultures with Raj Sisodia and Bob Chapman

    October 1st at 2 PM EST: Conscious Culture Part II: Fostering a Joyful Work Environment with Peggy Burns

  • June 16, 2020 3:11 PM | Kelly Chewning (Administrator)

    This month’s newsletter shares our announcement and welcome to our newest board member, Kent Gregoire. Then we relay some highlights from our recent online panel discussion. We are each finding a path through daily challenges, navigating the current economic disruption, marches for social justice and other personal changes all while reacting to an extraordinary global pandemic. 

    CCB is a growing community and here to help each other to find the combination of purpose, profit, change and support that fits your situation. Please reach out with any questions, or connections, that you need. We’ll keep trying to provide resources that move us all forward.

    How the Covid-19 Pandemic is Affecting Stakeholders, Avoiding Balance or Trade-Offs

    Engagement helps you find the right business mix


    One key theme in a May 28th panel discussion was the need to “have it all” in today’s business climate – profits and purpose, ethics and fierce competition – and moving quickly enough to make key decisions while serving multiple goals. The pressure of maintaining a company amidst  severe community needs have ramped up demands on management teams and executives.

    More than 70 people joined an online discussion to address that balance with Ed Freeman, author of “The Power of And” is a professor at the University of Virginia/Darden School of Business. He was joined by Rob Waldron, CEO of Curriculum Associates, and Ralph Carlton, co-CEO of King Arthur Flour. A recording of the discussion is available here.

    Freeman noted there are dozens of new phrases describing impact investment, inclusive capitalism etc. because the old models are failing to account for all stakeholders. While companies are operating in survival mode, it can be a difficult time to maintain a social mission. But explaining the situation to community and workers is important to give full context and intentions, reducing the risk of being misunderstood.

    “Doing the right thing is very, very clear to us,” Carlton said, describing how employee-owned King Arthur company raised its minimum wage to ensure a living wage. “We have monthly open-book meetings with employees to explain financial results.”

    Please welcome CCB board member Kent Gregoire

    Entrepreneur, community builder and team leader

    Consultant and business builder Kent Gregoire has been part of the CCB member community since 2018. He joins the board this summer, with a focus on membership. He’s been an advisor to start-ups and operating company CEOs for years and active in his local area, whether that was in Naples, FL. or Burlington, VT. 

    In his work life, he focuses on responsibility centered leadership and selling at the executive level, conscious capitalism education. His non-profit roles have included Girls Inc. career training programs and other progressive causes.


    Small Bits Worth Noting

    Lowell-based Kronos Inc. is marking Juneteenth holiday, making June 19th a paid holiday for its workforce, noting via its social channels that this is another step in the work to be done in social justice and equity. The date marks the emancipation of the last U.S. slaves, freed in 1865 in Texas.

    Webinars on business restart/growth, transition planning and the importance of analytics are available from the National Center for the Middle Market at The Ohio State University’s business school. Details are here.

    Upcoming Events


    Giving access to some doesn't mean taking it away from others. We must ensure Black and Latinx entrepreneurs get the support they need. Join us for good on June 22, an evening Zoom discussion on closing the Boston region's racial wealth gap.

  • May 18, 2020 10:16 AM | Kelly Chewning (Administrator)

    HELPING OUT, MAKING CHANGES, PREPARING FOR WHAT’S NEXT

    Resetting business and new plans are part of a work-from-home agenda

    The local advisories and daily changes in work, school and other activities have all disrupted our usual routine during the coronavirus outbreak. Several Conscious Capitalism/Boston events went “virtual” and local members have found ways to maintain their focus, service, mission and even try new ideas out (let’s call it “innovation” to impress the neighbors, since we’re working from home.)


    At Boloco, the burrito and bowl restaurants quickly shifted to serving frontline hospital workers and first responders. Sales weren’t enough to keep the doors open and, eventually, stores were closed with the hope of reopening in May. CEO John Pepper reported that the company was selected for the federal Paycheck Protection Program, using the proceeds to add $2-per-hour in “hazard pay” for every worker who stayed on after March 16th.

     

    Budget questions and stock market strategies led to a new discussion group for Newton-based investment advisor Financial Planning Solutions. CCB Board member Lyman Jackson has been working from his dining table but his four-person company calls the open conversation “Water Cooler” and everyone is invited. The Wednesday gathering is open to clients and the public, to talk about stock market or some other concern, such as whether to refinance a mortgage.

    “For example, clients with kids in high school, getting ready for college, typically invest conservatively, because you don’t want to lose 30 percent right before having to write tuition checks,” Jackson said. “We spread the word via LinkedIN and put it together in about a week. We send out an email invitation on Mondays, then share the questions and advice from the Water Cooler. There was a great conversation in April about applying to the Paycheck Protection Program because people wanted to talk about it.”


    In late April, Teak Media helped client Project Bread to get the word out about food insecurity. This year’s 52ndannual Walk for Hunger was remade as a virtual fundraiser when local food pantry donations and volunteer resources were stretched thin. 

    Erin McAleer, president of Project Bread, explained the issue. “We are also acutely aware that the 1 in 11 households and 1 in 9 children experiencing food insecurity in Massachusetts right now, are disproportionately impacted by the negative consequences of quarantines, unpaid sick leave, lost wages and school closings.”

    She encouraged people in need to seek SNAP benefits, which provides meals on a scale suited to the crisis. Also, we at CCB support donating money – not groceries -- to your town’s food pantry or the Greater Boston Food Bank.


    Even co-working spaces such as Workbar and ImpactHub have been building community from a distance, hosting webinars or offering support. Calls and online events to match local people with needed services and supplies are among the ways that office culture is changing. Workbar CEO Sarah Travers wrote to network members saying desks may be farther apart and with partitions, or limited hours, when facilities reopen.


    RESOURCES FROM CONSCIOUS CAPITALISM INTERNATIONAL

    Thanks to all of you who participated in the online virtual conference events. If you joined the Zoom discussions, webinars or the Slack channel, please note these important updates.

    Conscious Capitalism International messages on Slack that were part of the open, free annual conference were discontinued as of May 15th. If you are missing contacts or information from that software, please let us know via email. You can also ask info@consciouscapitalism.org about contacts, or other details, once the Slack channel goes dark.

    The national organization also created an opt-in community for anyone looking to learn about Conscious Capitalism or engage with other individuals. That link is: https://www.consciouscapitalism.org/online-community-platform

    Please also keep in mind that local New England members can message each other directly from our local site by clicking Members tab and scrolling/clicking any name. We encourage people to suggest event topics, new member introductions and other ways to spread the word about Conscious Capitalism throughout New England.

    UPCOMING EVENTS

    Stakeholder Management During the Pandemic on May 28 at 2:00 EST 

  • April 13, 2020 2:14 PM | Kelly Chewning (Administrator)

    Usually, this annual gathering brings hundreds of people together to share ideas and hear from inspiring Conscious Capitalism leaders. Instead, registration is now free, and sessions are shifted to web-based conferences – all at no charge through May 1. Register and learn more here for sessions.  

    Leading with purpose and mission is a key element of this year’s Conscious Capitalism annual conference, and responses to the pandemic and its effects on commerce clearly are a priority for people and companies of all sizes. This is a rare chance to learn from each other and meet both local contacts and chapter members from around the world. Many speaker presentations and slide decks from this year – and previous conferences – are available at the YouTube channel and via links from the conference website.

    Sessions on Monday-Thursday are open to join your fellow Conscious Capitalists and share, and learn together to find creative, stakeholder-oriented solutions to current challenges.

    On Fridays, CCI staff help you to develop leadership and interactions to best serve your team and community, in an extended discussion format across a wide spectrum of locations and industries.

    For instance, Kip Tindell, founder and former CEO of the Container Store, spent an hour detailing how he sees the world’s movement toward sustainability, economic fairness and other benefits all coming together in a way that resembles the critical mass of earlier eras, including the 1960s U.S. civil rights movement. He wrote about leading a company with passion in his book, Uncontainable.

    A mastermind session with Ron Shaich, a co-founder of Panera Bread and Au Bon Pain, and longtime supporter of stakeholder capitalism is already posted. Nationally-known CEOs and strategists are available to help answer questions, and the community is gathering - while remaining safely at a distance and not traveling.

  • September 10, 2019 2:51 PM | Kelly Chewning (Administrator)


    Do you know your purpose in life? How would you even begin to define, live and lead a purpose-driven life? Author Miracle Olatunji, Purpose: How to Live and Lead with Impact, takes readers on the journey of her miraculous life story to growing up and learning pivotal life lessons about meaning and purpose. Inside the book, you'll learn:

    * How to uncover your talents and unique gifts

    * Systems for developing essential skills for purposeful, effective leadership

    * Ways to build meaningful connections in a fast-paced, digital world

    * Stories of impactful leaders in various industries

    * We have unlimited potential and purpose enables us to tap into it.

    We have the power to create. We can give life to ideas that become breathtaking art pieces, thought-provocative books, world-changing organizations, powerful movements, life-saving inventions, and more.This book is an indispensable guide to conscious capitalists seeking to make an impact on their organizations, communities and the world. It starts within FIRST and then moves on from there. Make change based on your heart and what your individual purpose and calling is.

    Purpose: How to Live and Lead with Impact is now available for purchase. Happy reading!  

    About the Author: 

    Miracle Olatunji is an entrepreneur, international speaker, student, and author of Purpose: How To Live and Lead With Impact. With a passion for empowering the next generation of leaders and global citizens, she founded OpportuniMe, an organization that connects youth with personal and professional development opportunities. 

    Miracle has been honored as a Young Global Leadership Scholar, Youth Entrepreneur Of The Year, and was the grand prize winner of the World Series of Entrepreneurship. Her work has been featured in Forbes, Thrive Global, Technical.ly, and The CEO Library. 

    She enjoys traveling and inspiring people worldwide to leverage the power of purpose in their personal and professional lives and organizations.



  • August 27, 2019 3:04 PM | Kelly Chewning (Administrator)

    The Business Roundtable recently made huge waves in the business community - and brought true excitement to the Conscious Capitalism movement. If you haven't heard, on August 19th released its "Statement on the Purpose of a Corporation" stating:

    While each of our own individual companies serves its own corporate purpose, we share a fundamental commitment to all our stakeholders. 

    This statement was signed by 181(!) CEOs including some of the largest companies in the world. 

    The collective response of the Conscious Capitalism movement has been, "Yes! Our message is being heard and spread." Our work is paying off and changes are coming. 

    We acknowledge this isn't the end of our road. So far, while statements are a first step, we want to see more action by companies to support ALL stakeholders in their ecosystem. We look forward to helping more and more companies along in this journey.  


  • January 30, 2018 1:59 PM | Kelly Chewning (Administrator)

    Since Leadership is one of the four pillars of Conscious Capitalism, this quote from Jeff Weiner, CEO LinkedIn is a great starting place for defining the Conscious Leadership:  

    “We need to expand the world’s collective wisdom; share and bind humanity (The Art of Happiness) now we need to take it to the next level. How do we teach compassion in our business schools as a potential starter?" - Jeff Weiner, CEO, LinkedIn

     For a much more in-depth look at this the topic, watch the complete video here.  

  • January 17, 2018 11:28 AM | Kelly Chewning (Administrator)

    Movement is afoot between Wall Street and the business community. The Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) that have spawned a whole new sense of business renewal and focus on taking responsibility for our global issues as a society is creating a new ecosystem between businesses, society and Wall Street. As Mr. Fink so eloquently articulates, "If a company doesn't engage with the community and have a sense of purpose it will ultimately lose the license to operate from key stakeholders." 

    Mr. Fink's complete letter to CEOs can be found here.  

    At Conscious Capitalism, we focus on purpose and stakeholders as two of the four key elements for success.  Join our cause and mission!


  • September 18, 2017 9:48 AM | Anonymous

    Culture is at the heart of many great companies. It’s more enduring than strategy, and often makes the difference between a strategy’s success or failure.

    But what if culture is the strategy, rather than separate from it? As strategy+business wrote, “Confining culture to the narrow role of ‘enabling’ strategy prevents it from strengthening strategy by being part of it. It also weakens the power of strategy to turn your company’s cultural strengths into a source of enduring advantage.”

    That message was reinforced by the two speakers at our most recent Conscious Conversation, Managing Culture Intentionally, on September 12, 2017, held in conjunction with our great partner, ImpactHub Boston. Greg Kunkel, SVP and Co-Founder of Next Jump, and John Pepper, Founder and CEO of Boloco, both told stories of how they came to discover that culture is the most important determinant of their companies’ success. Through a discussion moderated by Colleen Brisport, independent business and human rights advisor, we learned that crafting culture is a long and arduous process of communication and empowerment.

    The 50 participants each had something to say, as well. We broke into four groups and let the conversation flow. Ideas surfaced for influencing culture, but so did frustrations. Communications is important, for example, but are people listening? Giving feedback is empowering, but how it’s delivered and received makes a big difference. Leaders stress culture but they must walk the talk. 

    There are no easy answers to addressing culture, but the imperative to try new things came across strongly. Indeed, a strong validation came from several participants who told us they heard new ideas that they would try to implement. That’s what our conscious conversations are all about. 


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