Side by Side: Meriko Kubota Joins the Junxion Team

Mike Rowlands is someone I have known for years. We travel in the same community of individuals who work with organizations to make positive change in our society and for our environment. Our values and vision for the world are aligned, which is why when Mike invited me to join Junxion as an Affiliate Consultant the answer was yes.

This year I launched my own consultancy, Social Purpose Strategies, and in collaboration with Junxion I hope we will increase the number of organizations and individuals we can positively impact. I am incredibly excited about our collaboration and for the opportunity to share our knowledge to better serve our clients.

I am incredibly excited about our collaboration.

I am most passionate about helping businesses develop their purpose. We are continually seeing new reports—such as CONE’s latest research on Purpose—giving evidence that when companies integrate their business goals and social value, consumers reward them favourably with loyalty and endorsements. This year, Deloitte’s report on global human capital trends showcases the ways in which businesses are shifting their profiles to become more like social enterprises—a trend Mike and Junxion identified years ago.

We are seeing that social strategies are becoming just as important as financial and human capital strategies, and I believe this is the most exciting time to be helping businesses in the field of corporate social responsibility.

If you don’t believe me, then I know you will probably put more weight to the words of Larry Fink, CEO of US investment firm Black Rock. He oversees billions of dollars in investments and has influence on thousands of businesses. His annual letter to CEOs this year advises leaders to operate with a sense of purpose, as it is now table stakes to add value to society beyond profit.

Mike and the Junxion team have expertise and experience in strategic planning, brand development, corporate social responsibility strategy and reporting. I bring my experience of working from within organizations such as TELUS and MEC, and I hope together we can support the further development of social purpose for businesses. I also hope we can further develop organizational capacity in measuring social impact.

Meriko Kubota specializes in helping organizations to develop their social purpose, align their CSR strategies, and develop metrics and reporting to measure social impact. She’s a Senior Affiliate Consultant with Junxion. Reach her via [email protected].

I first met Meriko Kubota four or five years ago, after she’d completed The Art of Leadership, a training that had shifted my own thinking and perspective just a year or two before. It was immediately clear we share ideas about how to shift others’ thinking about the role of business in society.

When I was chatting with Meriko earlier this year and she let me know she would not be returning to her previous employer after her maternity leave and instead would be ‘hanging her own shingle,’ I was excited to invite her to join Junxion’s new Affiliate program. This is an opportunity for values-aligned, senior experts to work in close collaboration with Junxion and our team on projects bigger than they might be able to win or deliver working solo.

We desperately need to reset the balance between business and society.

I’m excited she said yes. Meriko’s experience complements Junxion’s. She brings to Junxion experience working inside two of Canada’s biggest, most successful companies and experience as a Director of one of the world’s most important and enduring NGOs. Her values are fully aligned with Junxion’s—as is her ambition to help leaders build the success stories of a clean, healthy and diverse economy that honours the promise of human potential.

As I sit writing this in my parents’ living room, I’m looking out across a valley choked with smoke from the more than 500 forest fires burning in British Columbia this summer. It’s smoke so thick it’s even grounded forest firefighters’ aircraft. As another friend recently wrote, “In place of the celebratory nature-reveling the season usually brings are expressions of fear and grief at the idea that we may have abruptly stepped into a new kind of summer… a season of fire and destruction in a world out of balance.”

We desperately need to reset that balance and doing so will require us to change the very nature of business. Companies and their leaders everywhere are talking with increasing frequency and commitment about ‘purpose’ and ‘meaning,’ ‘responsibility’ and ‘sustainability,’ ‘authenticity’ and ‘impact.’ Whatever the jargon, the message is clear: the business of business is changing, and we’re in the early days of a shift to a new, sustainable, and just economy. Junxion exists to accelerate the shift.

Meriko is as committed as Junxion to this effort. And she’s as ambitious as we are to help leaders build the success stories of the next economy.

Mike Rowlands is President & CEO at Junxion. He’s worked with business and social sector leaders on four continents, helping them to envision and work to build sustainable and just organizations. Reach him via [email protected].

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