What is Conscious Capitalism?
Conscious Capitalism is a fast-growing global movement dedicated to elevating humanity through a business philosophy that has four key characteristics:
Business can and should be done with a higher socially-beneficial purpose in mind, not just with a view to maximizing profits. A compelling sense of purpose creates a greater degree of engagement for all stakeholders and enhances organisational energy.
Conscious businesses are explicitly managed for the simultaneous benefit of all their stakeholders, including customers, team members, investors, suppliers, communities and the environment. A conscious business aligns the interests of its stakeholders, seeking solutions to benefit all.
Driven primarily by service to the organisation’s purpose and stakeholders rather than power or money, conscious leaders lead by mentoring, motivating, developing and inspiring people, not through command and-control or the use of “carrot and stick” incentives.
Conscious cultures are tangible to their stakeholders as well as to outside observers; you can feel the difference when you walk into a conscious business versus one that is primarily pursuing profit. We capture this in in the acronym TACTILE: Trust, Accountability, Caring, Transparency, Integrity, Loyalty and Egalitarianism
“Companies either operate from the fears of the ego or the love of the soul.”
— Richard Barrett
Conscious Capitalism builds on the foundations of Capitalism – voluntary exchange, entrepreneurship, competition, freedom to trade and the rule of law. These are essential to a healthy functioning economy, as are other elements of Conscious Capitalism including trust, compassion, collaboration and value creation.
Research published in the book Firms of Endearment: How World Class Companies Profit from Passion and Purpose (Sisodia, Sheth, and Wolfe, Pearson Education 2014), found companies adhering to the principles of Conscious Capitalism outperformed the market financially over all measured time periods from 3 to 15 years.
In addition to financial wealth these companies create many other kinds of societal wealth: fulfilled employees, happy and loyal customers, innovative and profitable suppliers, thriving and environmentally healthy communities and more.
The Conscious Capitalism movement includes numerous CEOs and thought leaders globally. To fulfil its purpose and mission, and to respond to increasing demand for information, support and collaboration, Conscious Capitalism, Inc. empowers a global network of U.S. and International Chapters to run events and through presentations, publications and social media. The Australian Chapter currently has communities in Sydney, Melbourne, and Perth and in 2016 merged with New Zealand.
Conscious Capitalism Australia & New Zealand is a non-for-profit organization dedicated to the cultivation of the theory and practice of Conscious Capitalism and serving as communities of inquiry and practice for business leaders, entrepreneurs, coaches and consultants and others. We aim to co-create a thriving ecosystem of conscious businesses that serve, lead and advocate the greater good.
“Capitalism is the most successful form of human social cooperation ever created.”
— Ed Freeman, originator of the Stakeholder Management Theory, trustee, Conscious Capitalism, Inc.
“Conscious Capitalism is a more complex form of Capitalism, that reflects and leverages the interdependent nature of life and all of the stakeholders in a business.”
— John Mackey, co-founder & co-CEO, Whole Foods Market, trustee, Conscious Capitalism, Inc.
THE CONSCIOUS CAPITALISM CREDO
We believe that business is good because it creates value, it is ethical because it is based on voluntary exchange, it is noble because it can elevate our existence, and it is heroic because it lifts people out of poverty and creates prosperity. Free enterprise capitalism is the most powerful system for social cooperation and human progress ever conceived. It is one of the most compelling ideas we humans have ever had. But we can aspire to even more.
Conscious Capitalism is a way of thinking about capitalism and business that better reflects where we are in the human journey, the state of our world today, and the innate potential of business to make a positive impact on the world. Conscious businesses are galvanized by higher purposes that serve, align, and integrate the interests of all their major stakeholders. Their higher state of consciousness makes visible to them the interdependencies that exist across all stakeholders, allowing them to discover and harvest synergies from situations that otherwise seem replete with trade-offs. They have conscious leaders who are driven by service to the company’s purpose, all the people the business touches, and the planet we all share together. Conscious businesses have trusting, authentic, innovative and caring cultures that make working there a source of both personal growth and professional fulfillment. They endeavor to create financial, intellectual, social, cultural, emotional, spiritual, physical and ecological wealth for all their stakeholders.
Conscious businesses will help evolve our world so that billions of people can flourish, leading lives infused with passion, purpose, love and creativity; a world of freedom, harmony, prosperity, and compassion.
Join the movement! Commit to putting Conscious Capitalism into practice in your business, and be supported with pathways, tools and resources, peers and connections you need.
“Practicing Conscious Capitalism enriches your life and the lives of people you do business with. And it’s without a doubt, the most fun, enduring and profitable way to build a sustainable business.”
— Kip Tindell, Chairman & CEO, The Container Store, trustee, Conscious Capitalism, Inc.