Reflections of Our CEO: Three Powerful Projects

Junxion’s not a big firm. But we like to think we play a big game. From our offices in Vancouver and Toronto, Canada, and London, UK, we’ve served and supported clients on five continents. They are startup social entrepreneurs, audacious corporate intrapreneurs, and leaders of some of the world’s most recognized NGOs. Alongside them, we’re building the case studies of the next economy.

What does that mean? As the headlines of the day are occupied by many political leaders’ ineptitude, this week’s climate strikes are demonstrations of mounting frustration at the status quo. Like great social movements of the past, the climate strikes have emerged not from some grand plan issued from on high, but from the genius of the grassroots.

Powerful change emerges from the genius of the grassroots.

Last week, Junxion declared a climate emergency. We’ve been in conversation with peers and clients about how that might shift our work. No, we won’t suddenly vilify people that are trying hard to do good work inside flawed organizational and social systems. But we will be focusing our efforts on accelerants of change. Because change is what we need, in all manner of systems.

This week, we’d like to share three projects about which we’re particularly proud—projects we believe have outsized influence on some of the most important issues of the day.

The Body Shop

“My passionate belief is that business can be fun, it can be conducted with love and a powerful force for good” – Dame Anita Roddick

For the past 14 months, we’ve been working in confidence and in partnership with B Lab to help The Body Shop achieve certification as a B Corp. This work involved collaboration across about 20 country operations, an incredibly deep understanding of the B Impact Assessment (including its distinctions between countries and sectors), and an enormous amount of work.

The Body Shop is one of the world’s oldest and most respected social ventures. The spirit of Anita Roddick seems alive and well today as the company she founded shows its leadership once more, through this renewed commitment to ‘using business as a force for good.’

Social Venture Circle

Nearly 40 years ago, a few dozen social entrepreneurs came together to establish Social Venture Network (SVN) to connect leaders who see business as a tool for social equity and ecological sustainability. Through SVN’s nearly four decades of work, this group of relentless souls has co-created myriad more organizations…. Business Alliance for Local Living Economies. American Sustainable Business Council. Net Impact. Investors’ Circle.

Speaking of Investors’ Circle, in 2018, the Boards of Directors of SVN (on which I feel fortunate to serve) and Investors’ Circle completed a merger. In the following months, alongside our friends at Guru Media Solutions, we rebranded the new organization—now Social Venture Circle—focusing on a vision of ‘a global economy that is regenerative, just, and prosperous for everyone’ and inviting members with the simple tagline, ‘Welcome to the next economy.’

UN Principles for Responsible Banking

For years, the United Nations Environment Program’s Finance Initiative has convened leading financial services companies—including the world’s biggest banks—to talk about issues of shared interest. Just over a decade ago, they launched the Principles for Responsible Investment, a project in which Junxion co-owner and London-based MD Adam Garfunkel was involved.

This week, at the General Assembly, the Principles for Responsible Banking were launched. Deutsche Bank, Citigroup and Barclays were among 130 banks to sign on—a group that holds more than $47 trillion in assets—one-third of the global industry.

Junxion worked last year on the global communications strategy for this project, engaging with the 30 founding banks that developed the principles, working in close collaboration with UNEP-FI. With their signatures and endorsements, these hugely influential institutions have committed to consider the impacts of their loan portfolios on society and the environment, as well as their financial bottom lines.

Naturally, I’m stupendously proud of our team, our clients, and our work. These are the kind of projects Junxion exists to undertake as we work in pursuit of our purpose—to accelerate the shift to the next economy.

Are you inspired by these?

Are you ready to do your part on urgent issues like these?

Let’s Be Audacious Together….

Be well,

Be love,

Mike

Mike Rowlands is President & CEO at Junxion. Through Junxion, Hollyhock, Social Venture Circle, and ORS Impact, he’s working hard ‘to put his career where his mouth is.’ You can reach him via [email protected].

 

 

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