Understanding, managing and improving impact
a rewarding challenge for large, medium and small enterprises
In the past, entrepreneurship was mainly concerned with financial return on investment and profit maximization. Nowadays, enterprises from all sizes attach increasing importance to their role in society and their contribution to various forms of sustainable development. Contemporary enterprises realize that customers, employees and other stakeholders are concerned about their impact on society and environment. Managing stakeholder interests and avoiding negative impact is key for safeguarding an enterprise’s reputation and thus of vital importance for long term success.
Complementing financial rewards and professional opportunities with societal and ecological purpose provides key additional assets in the ongoing war for talent. Also, investors increasingly care about the impact of their investments. Emerging types of investors and shareholders seek an adequate balance between financial returns and positive impact on society and environment. They therefore consciously assess the environmental, social and governance (ESG) risks of their investments.
Applying such paradigms implies changing entrepreneurial practices; across the design of business models, R&D, investment planning, corporate governance, supply chain, HRM, marketing, accounting, reporting, etc. Furthermore, specific efforts are needed to demonstrate and highlight genuine and trustworthy efforts and impacts of enterprises that try to balance the ‘for profit’ nature of their business with generation of positive impacts on society.
Understanding, managing and improving your impact has become an integral ingredient for long-term entrepreneurial success. Yet, across many enterprises there is a clear need to further enhance professional capacities needed for impact management and transparent stakeholder accountability.
C-lever.org, partnering with Social Value International and others, therefore proposes a twofold initiative that may respond to such needs.