10 keys to reinvent capitalism

Spanish society shows a clear consensus that capitalism, as a socioeconomic model, needs a profound transformation towards a system that cares more about people and the planet: 7 out of 10 people suspend the system in this context, according to the study prepared by Canvas Sustainable Strategies together with other organizations such as the Malaga University.

At the same time, there is a clear distrust that the organizations of the current system are going to undertake the necessary change to move towards a new model. Sustainability, purpose and reputation are key factors in this scenario.

Spanish citizenship gives a 4 to the current socioeconomic system. 80% consider that capitalism needs a great transformation, thinking about the effects it has for society and the planet as a whole.

The purpose is the reason for existing and being of an organization, focusing on the needs that it seeks to solve: what positive impact does it generate on people and the environment? exist studies that evidence that the companies that are managed under this model they have a positive impact on business, society and the planet.

Companies with purpose: a social demand

We live in a moment in which a new business genetics that affects the trust and the reputation of organizations. This change represents an opportunity to respond to the global needs of the Agenda 2030.

Purpose-driven companies, also known as the fourth sector of the economyThey work from the perspective of triple impact (positive impact on people, the planet and the economy) and are leading a transformation measuring and managing their impacts economic, but also social and environmental to contribute to the common good.

One of the most demanded transformations is the transition from companies whose objective is exclusively economic benefit to companies with a shared purpose, that is, that balance their income statement with generating a positive impact on society and the environment.

In this sense, although there is no clear knowledge among citizens about this type of companies74% of Spanish society, according to our study, believe that it is very necessary that there are companies with this new model for the transformation of the system, but they do not fully trust that this model is currently a reality or just a “facade”.

Who leads the process?

Institutions are experiencing a notable crisis of legitimacy as a reflection of the current need to change leadership models. In this context, citizen movements are consolidated as self-organized referents, against the model of the individual, intrinsic to the current socioeconomic system.

Regarding the role that current institutions and organizations can play in this regard, the only one that approves is the educational field (schools, universities, scientific system…): 42% highlight its relevant role so that the capitalist system becomes a model that ensures the positive impact on society and the planet.

Bordering on approval are international organizations, citizen movements and the media. On the opposite side, political parties and leaders, as well as Church and religious leaders, business leaders and Public Administration.

Despite apparent disinterest and apathy, the evidence demonstrates that citizens are assuming a more active and pollinating role, encouraging organizations to rethink their purpose beyond purely financial dimensions and towards a more inclusive and sustainable economic system.

But let’s see the 10 keys to the reinvention of capitalism according to the vision of citizens about companies with a purpose:

  1. The transformation of the system is inescapable. More than 78% consider that the economic system has to change.

  2. Basic needs in the spotlight. People are concerned (more than 70%) about the triple impact of the system on society. It is necessary to pay attention to decent work, care for human health and the planet in order to have a “healthy” socioeconomic system.

  3. Prosperity for the environment is especially critical. The creation of employment and prosperity for society is the first thing that Spanish citizens expect companies with a purpose to invest in.

  4. Crisis of legitimacy of the organizations. There is a critical attitude towards traditional referents. Only educational entities approve. Citizen movements are seen as one of the engines of the transformation of the future together with international organizations.

  5. Companies with a purpose are necessary. 74% of the population considers it unavoidable that companies ensure the triple impact for the transformation of the system.

  6. Opportunity to reinvent yourself. The profile of a company with purpose represents a new model that combines several characteristics that are not usually connected: the global and the local, the urban and the rural. The transformation of the system involves rethinking organizations, opening up to new territories and the opportunity to be part of the change.

  7. The challenge of allying for change. The challenge for these companies is to be engines of change in their sectors and to be one of the protagonists of the transformation expected from the current system.

  8. Grow in capacity for social impact. The population expects companies to invest in job creation and prosperity, to care about increasing their social impact, focusing on general well-being.

  9. Active citizenship: from commitment to habit. A high percentage of the people consulted are committed to sustainable development and state that they have (more than 60%) responsible habits towards the environment and people; however, most say they perform these habits only occasionally or almost never.

  10. Create proactive links with purpose. Purpose-driven companies represent the engine of change that can inspire the rest of society with responsible attitudes, actions and practices to contribute to change.

Will these companies be able to show citizens that theirs is serious?

Isabel Ruiz-MoraUniversity Professor, Faculty of Communication, Malaga University and Alejandro Alvarez-NobellResearch Professor in Strategic Communication, Malaga University

This article was originally published on The Conversation. read the original.


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