Category Archives: Ethics

Did Apple Hear Me?

 

Hi folks. It’s been a while. Life got busy without asking first.

More posts and more updates to come soon, and I was trying to get the foundations of the change done before posting again, but I just couldn’t resist, and here’s why, something important is getting ‘Better’…

 

 

For those new to these parts, I’ve had a love hate relationship with Apple as long as I’ve been involved in the world of CSR. Beautiful design and killer marketing has constantly torn at my belief that Apple was one of the most guilty by avoidance in the wider responsible business agenda. I’ve written a few times and one of the most recent (before the barren spell) was just after Tim Cook took the CEO mantle and offered hope to those who desperately dreamed for a new all-star athlete in the CSR team.

Back in February 2012 with ‘Apple’s Ethical Watershed‘ I dared to suggest that Tim Cook would provide an optimistic leadership style borne out of his supply chain background and obviously different personality to his predecessor Steve Jobs, and it’s looking I could have been right.

I’d like to think that maybe, just maybe, this video is further evidence of internal changes of ethos and the continuation of previous signs of a greener leadership and a new brand positioning campaign. iCSR could be on the way!

The fact that Apple is actively talking green could be the start of something big, very big.

 

Being Good is Not Overrated

Despicable-Me-PosterYes, I can muster a pretty impressive Meeeester Gru impression. My son may not agree, but hey, it makes me laugh.

Apologies for this post, but this is all about not-so-Despicable me. No offence taken at all if you click away at this point, as I need to indulge myself a little.

After seven and a half years of all things Coethica the time is ready for me to evolve. I know not what that change is specifically at this particular moment – all suggestions are very welcome from anywhere, or any sector in the world – but a new direction will be forged. Some interesting offers are being considered but for the sanity of everybody around me my main hat will at least be worn much less from this day on.

The reason for this channel of personal thinking out loud is to help clear my head and also tap into and share with some of the many amazing people and organisations I have met and shared many ideas online. I am by nature an explorer, a passionate creative nuisance intent on leaving our world better than it would have been without me.

After falling in love with the purest form of this thing called CSR (i.e. holistic, balanced and embedded – you know the one, the lesser spotted variety) about 15 years ago I’ve met leaders from global CEO’s to local start-up entrepreneurs in deprived communities that have both dazzled and depressed. I’ve set up social enterprises, supported corporates and what feels like everything in between. I’m sure there’s a couple of books in there somewhere.

I know for a fact business can change the world, most of the time it just needs giving the confidence to try harder.

This is not to say Coethica will be no more, version 2 is defined and ready to roll, it is that it needs at least somebody else at the helm. Let me know if you want to find out more and take the reins of a ready-made social business to change the world! My gift to the right person, with maybe a couple of thin strings.

It has been for the most part a lonely journey, both geographically and intellectually, setting off in 2005 to challenge and inspire the small and medium market (but not excluding the corporates) to see the benefits of all things CSR / social enterprise /’pick your ethical business buzzword’ all atop a rollercoaster of a personal life that until recently only began to give me genuine freedom to get out and begin to deliver what we had learned through years of grassroots SME and corporate ‘market research’.

Sometimes the hardest decision in the world is being honest with yourself and make that change to re-energise spiritually. My wonderful wife and wider family have supported me through some magical highs and crushing lows and I owe it to them to take a more simplified path. Spinning too many plates for too long, however impressive at the time, is a recipe for one hell of a mess of crockery, not that I’ve broken many but I’ve been close to a couple of wobblers.

In short, I’m taking a the next couple of months to explore my own future as a real person separate from Coethica – a hard task for any entrepreneur, and the options on the horizon so far just don’t feel like the right fit. So, if you or anybody you know has a challenge they need help with or a gap that needs filling, by somebody of certain unique cocktail of experiences and abilities, well, as long as it serves a greater good, my intrigue is open for discussion.

If anybody should want a more focused summary of me, give me a call (get in touch via the comments) as I like a good natter, or for the more passive / furtive out there, my LinkedIn profile is probably as good place to start as any.

And just for pure childish summer fun, here is the trailer for Despicable Me 2. Enjoy. Freeeeze Ray!

Would You Sack Luis Suarez?

AngerWhat would you do if an employee bit one of your competitors?

I know this doesn’t happen often, and in most cases the answer is to show that employee the door, quickly. What if that employee was one of most talented in your industry? Should that make a difference? What if that employee also demonstrated public indicators of emotional or mental instability?

The Liverpool FC v Chelsea FC game yesterday was supposed to be a stage for a returning and much loved ex-manager and a platform to show support for a recently departed campaigner for justice following the Hillsborough disaster, but midway through the second half the next day’s headlines were decided beyond all doubt.

Why Luis Suarez sank his teeth into Branislav Ivanovic is a mystery. No real warning signs of prior animosity during the game leading to an innocuous tussle, then a bolt from the blue vampire-like thrust toward the Chelsea defender. Nobody saw it coming, but then again you wouldn’t, and the referee didn’t either.

So, what happens next? Continue reading

Charities Need to Increase Overheads

Dan Pallotta: The way we think about charity is wrong

If you work in social enterprise or a charitable organisation make sure you find 18 minutes and 55 seconds to watch the video below.

I’ve seen the link to this video enthusiastically being bounced around the social media world for a few days and I finally managed to squeeze in a watch over lunch today.

I’ll let Dan do the talking first and add a few thoughts after you’ve heard what he has to say…

He’s absolutely on the money and he knows what he’s talking about. Too many in the social world are too disconnected from the strengths of the private sector.

I also understand that even given an acceptance of his ethos the next massive barrier is the delivery quality of this more aggressive approach to fundraising and marketing. Increased overheads can only be justified by operational results, and social impact over any agreed time period.

The big challenge is to encourage a significantly stronger entrepreneurial approach to social impact and mitigate the unease created by the increased blurring of the boundaries between private sector methodologies and social sector aspirations.

What will the Amazon of the social impact world look like?

Check out Dan Pallota’s webpage / Twitter profile @DanPallota for more information

The Climate Debate Gloves Are Off

But who will win?

 

I just had to share this to make sure you didn’t miss it.

THE best magazine cover, story and quote for quite some time. A bold statement to the core of the climate denier community. Congratulations Josh Tyrangiel (Editor) and all at Bloomberg Businessweek.

There is already a robust and increasing discourse around climate change brought on by Hurricane Sandy and this for me is a great stick in the ground for where we are at today. There is more hope for tomorrow.

 

The cover…

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The quote…

 

 

The story…

http://www.businessweek.com/articles/2012-11-01/its-global-warming-stupid#p1

 

 

Genuine Leadership Comes From MERIT*

The world needs leaders, and more than ever leaders with a strong moral compass.

You may remember my post about 2012  To Be  Big Year For Somebody, if not Your Big Year is a global competition aimed at identifying and nurturing the young  leaders of the future from across the globe through a year of travel and meeting current world leaders. Year one was big. Year two was bigger, and next year will see something new and even bigger.

Here is last year’s Your Big Year winner, the amazing Charles Batte, to set the scene…

 

The evolution is called World MERIT* (the asterisk is part of the brand!) and takes the concept well beyond that of Your Big Year.

The huge challenges of our tomorrows require a new breed of leader today. We have all been let down by those in historic positions of power across business and society that now require inspiration from those who are genuinely and tangibly connected to grassroots communities. Your Big Year began to unearth countless potential talented people from diverse backgrounds but could never nurture more than the overall individual winners. That needed to change.

So without further ado, relax and enjoy…

 

Trust me, this is going to be BIG. World MERIT* will officially launch later this year, and this is just the tip of the iceberg with a revolution being nurtured in parallel behind the WM* scenes.

I’ve agreed to help Chris Arnold (@MERITChris) and his team spread the message to the corporate world to help identify those looking to find potential World MERIT* candidates in their own organisations. So if you want more information about engaging your company send me message and I’ll connect you to Chris.

Watch this space…

What Are The Euro 2012 Sponsors Going To Do About Racism?

Tonight’s edition of  the BBC’s Panorama series was entitled “Euro 2012: Stadiums of Hate” which I hadn’t planned to watch but thought it was worth 30 mins in the background.

If you didn’t manage to catch it (you can watch via BBC’s iPlayer if available where you are)  Chris Rogers, an investigative journalist, spent some time in Poland / Ukraine to see for himself the racism and anti-Semitism and to pose the question “How safe will the travelling teams and fans be at Euro 2012?”.

This is not about creating a passionate storm over a few incidents caught on camera, but those that were captured screamed (and yes I am making assumptions) warnings of a deeper societal problem. It wasn’t the fact that there were obviously minority groups acting or merely talking about violence it was the ingrained nature of the images and tolerance demonstrated by the local authorities and footballing regulators.

To see almost professionally created  murals (and no signs of attempted removal), chanting on a grand scale (crowds of at least hundreds at one  game) and stomach churning sickening and obscene physical brutality caught on camera in a relatively condensed period of research was an emotionally jarring experience. Continue reading