Purpose Inspired: by Wayne Visser

Wayne Visser

Prof. Wayne Visser, PhD, shares his reflections on what it means to be purpose-inspired - for business, society and each one of us. The podcast explores how business can be a force for good in the world, and how individuals can make a positive difference. Covering topics like corporate social responsibility (CSR), sustainable business and transformational change, each series is based on one of Dr Visser's books that synthesizes the emerging ideas, practices and lessons learned on the journey to becoming purpose-inspired.

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S0.E0. Purpose Inspired: Introducing the Podcast
Jan 11 2019
S0.E0. Purpose Inspired: Introducing the Podcast
Hello. I’m Professor Dr Wayne Visser and in this podcast series, I share my reflections on what it means to be purpose-inspired, whether as an organisation, an individual or even as a whole society. It is really the story of my own exploration over the past 20 years of how business can be a force for good in the world, and how individuals can make a positive difference. I have organized the podcast chronologically, so you join me on the journey and see how key ideas evolve over time. As we go, you will notice the ebb and flow of global trends, the entry and exit of pioneering companies, and the twisting kaleidoscope of responses to the world’s greatest challenges. Over the past 30 years, I have travelled to more than 75 countries and captured my learning in more than 20 books on topics like corporate social responsibility and sustainable business. For each series, I have selected one book that synthesizes the emerging ideas, practices and lessons learned on the journey to being purpose-inspired. And I have tried to make each podcast a bite-size chunk of around 15 or 20 minutes. Some of you will be faithful companions for the entire trip, across multiple series. Others will tag along for a while, dipping in and out according to their interest. All of you are most welcome.In the inaugural series, we begin with my very first book – and one that I am in many ways still the most proud of. The book’s title is Beyond Reasonable Greed: Why Sustainable Business is a Much Better Idea, although I originally wanted to call it Shapeshifting. The reason is because I use a fun wildlife metaphor throughout the book, arguing that companies need to shift from acting like predatory lions to being more like elephants, which are wise, gentle and highly collaborative creatures. We end by exploring two scenarios for the world, called Oases in the Desert and Plains of the Serengeti. In subsequent series, I will share different approaches and ideas that emerged from other books of mine, like Business Frontiers, Making a Difference, The Age of Responsibility, The Quest for Sustainable Business and Sustainable Frontiers. I look forward having you along for the ride. Please do invite your friends to join us – the more the merrier. We are at a crucial time in our history where the problems are urgent, complex and in desperate need of innovative solutions. So the more we can share our ideas and knowledge – and the more we can all be purpose inspired – the better our chances of creating a future in which our children, and the other life we share this planet with, can not only survive, but positively thrive.
S0.E0. Purpose Inspired: Introducing the Podcast
Jan 11 2019
S0.E0. Purpose Inspired: Introducing the Podcast
Hello. I’m Professor Dr Wayne Visser and in this podcast series, I share my reflections on what it means to be purpose-inspired, whether as an organisation, an individual or even as a whole society. It is really the story of my own exploration over the past 20 years of how business can be a force for good in the world, and how individuals can make a positive difference. I have organized the podcast chronologically, so you join me on the journey and see how key ideas evolve over time. As we go, you will notice the ebb and flow of global trends, the entry and exit of pioneering companies, and the twisting kaleidoscope of responses to the world’s greatest challenges. Over the past 30 years, I have travelled to more than 75 countries and captured my learning in more than 20 books on topics like corporate social responsibility and sustainable business. For each series, I have selected one book that synthesizes the emerging ideas, practices and lessons learned on the journey to being purpose-inspired. And I have tried to make each podcast a bite-size chunk of around 15 or 20 minutes. Some of you will be faithful companions for the entire trip, across multiple series. Others will tag along for a while, dipping in and out according to their interest. All of you are most welcome.In the inaugural series, we begin with my very first book – and one that I am in many ways still the most proud of. The book’s title is Beyond Reasonable Greed: Why Sustainable Business is a Much Better Idea, although I originally wanted to call it Shapeshifting. The reason is because I use a fun wildlife metaphor throughout the book, arguing that companies need to shift from acting like predatory lions to being more like elephants, which are wise, gentle and highly collaborative creatures. We end by exploring two scenarios for the world, called Oases in the Desert and Plains of the Serengeti. In subsequent series, I will share different approaches and ideas that emerged from other books of mine, like Business Frontiers, Making a Difference, The Age of Responsibility, The Quest for Sustainable Business and Sustainable Frontiers. I look forward having you along for the ride. Please do invite your friends to join us – the more the merrier. We are at a crucial time in our history where the problems are urgent, complex and in desperate need of innovative solutions. So the more we can share our ideas and knowledge – and the more we can all be purpose inspired – the better our chances of creating a future in which our children, and the other life we share this planet with, can not only survive, but positively thrive.
S1.E0. Shapeshifting: Introducing Series 1
Jan 11 2019
S1.E0. Shapeshifting: Introducing Series 1
“Greed is good”. Some of you might remember the phrase immortalized by Michael Douglas who played Gordon Gekko in the 1987 movie Wall Street. Well, the world has more than lived up to these words by pursuing the principle that excessive greed is even better. In a critical analysis of the principles driving modern business, Series 1 of the Purpose Inspired podcast by Wayne Visser demonstrates that the predatory behavior of the lion is symbolic of the way most companies are run today. But the world cannot go on like this. The podcast, which is based on the book “Beyond Reasonable Greed” by Wayne Visser and Clem Sunter, argues strongly for an alternative and more positive vision involving sustainable business in both a social and an environmental sense. In order to achieve this, companies will need to change – to shapeshift – from the tooth-and-claw logic of lions to the more caring, holistic philosophy of the elephant.But what does this mean in practice? The podcast unpacks what is really meant by sustainability and sets out seven steps to create sustainable commerce, including a renewed focus on values, vision, work, governance, relationships, communication and services. We also look at what is required for sustainable economics, through new perspectives on measures, externalities, markets, investments, money, banking and trade. And then we look to the future, exploring two scenarios for the medium to long term: Oases in the Desert, where the corporate lions continue to rule, but their kingdoms are increasingly restricted by their own destructive behavior and popular discontent; and Plains of the Serengeti, where companies shapeshift into elephants which strive for a proper balance between cooperation and competition and a continuing diversity of species, large and small, strong and weak. The podcast concludes that multi-level shapeshifting is required for sustainability. Apart from corporate transformation, it is up to governments on the one hand and each and every one of us as individuals on the other to adopt the persona of an elephant in order to pass on a worthwhile heritage to our children. Join us on the journey, as we transform business fangs and claws into tusks and trunks.