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FBI Toolkit Update (Winter 2016)



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A presentation made in February 2016 to a range of groups interested in an update on the Flourishing Business Innovation Toolkit project.

The presentation provides a personal and detailed view of the history of the project and the our Toolkit - including current status of all elements of the project.

A recording of a Q&A with Antony Upward about this presentation is available to members of the Strongly Sustainable Business Model Group - linked from here:

For details of the process we're using to design our business please see our wiki:

As usual, recommended downloading the presentation and viewing in slideshow mode with the speakers notes handy

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FBI Toolkit Update (Winter 2016)

  1. 1. 1 @FlourishingBiz @StronglySustain #SSBMG a project by members of ThisworkislicensedunderaCreativeCommonsAttribution- NonCommercial-ShareAlike4.0UnportedLicense.Permissionsbeyondthescope ofthislicensemaybeavailableat FlourishingBusinessesInnovationToolkit–TheStorySoFar… Version1.12016-02-09 ©EdwardJamesConsultingLtd,SomeRightsReserved Flourishing Business Innovation Toolkit The Story So Far… A PersonalPersonal Perspective for the Members of the Strongly Sustainable Business Model Group Feb 9, 2016 Antony Upward @aupward ENTERPRISE Builds on many Builds on many slides; download & slides; download & view in slide show view in slide show mode for improved mode for improved comprehension comprehension Lots ofLots of speaker notes, speaker notes,inc. references inc. references
  2. 2. 2 Objective • Share my view of the Story so far… …to Inspire and Pollinate • In other words… – Make an invitation to accept our gift and make it your own – in your own hero’s journey* • Gift: Flourishing Business Canvas and the opportunity to engage, contribute, to contribute to your own flourishing • Question for You: – Will you accept our invitation? – How will you use our gift on your own journey? – Who will you pollinate? * The new story of business – mentors to their stakeholders – the provider of knowledge and resources for their hero’s journey. Sachs, J. (2012). Winning the story wars: Why those who tell (and live) the best stories will rule the future Harvard Business Review Press. (Hero’s Journey Video:
  3. 3. 3 Content 1. Convener • Core Beliefs • Starting Points 2. Why is flourishing the goal? • Appreciate / Abhor the Situation • Vision • Theory of Change 3. What came before this project? • Whose shoulders are we standing on? 4. Gap to be closed to realize the vision • Challenge – Language, Knowledge & Utility (inc. Beauty) 5. The journey 2010-2014 • The original research • A key realization – Theory for Success • Core Team Convened • Project & project vision, plan and business model outline 5. The journey 2014-present • Improved Canvas • Academic Credentials • First Explorer Program • Collaboration with Related Endeavours • Maqruee Funders & Strategic Partner • Go-to-Market Trials • Growing the Community • Validation / Feedback 5. What’s next for 2016 • Personal Assessment • An invitation • Appendix • Business Proposal, Vision, Mission, Strategy, Values, Plan Details & Status
  4. 4. 4 Introducing the Project’s Convener • Sustainability Business Architect – Certified Management Consultant • 25+ years consulting experience – 10+ years university teaching experience in business schools and elsewhere • Undergrad, grad and professional – Masters Environmental Studies in Business Model Design and Sustainability – 2010-13 • Thesis summarized in high ranked peer reviewed journal • Founder and principal of Edward James Consulting Ltd: Flourishing Enterprise Designers • OCAD U* Strategic Innovation Lab Industry Partner • Co-Founder Strongly Sustainable Business Model Group – Jan 2012 • Convening Entrepreneur and Program Director of the Flourishing Business Innovation Toolkit * OCADU – Ontario College of Art and Design University Faculty of Design includes using design to design anything that isn’t a thing (policy, process, business model, etc.) Antony Upward
  5. 5. 5 My Two Core Beliefs All life (including us humans), can only have the possibility to flourish forever§ on our finite planet¶ , if we accept our role as stewards¥ – caring for ourselves, each other, all life and our planet through our unlimited capacity for love and rational thought* A powerful illusion† , that we created for ourselves, is at the heart of our Global Problematiqué‡ : mind is separate from body, body from world, I from we, you from me, us from them, this from that. § Ehrenfeld, J. R. (2000). Colorless green ideas sleep furiously: Is the emergence of ‘Sustainable’ practices meaningful? Reflections, 1(4), 34-47. ¶ Allen, T. F. H. (2003). In Hoekstra T. W., Tainter J. A. (Eds.), Supply-side sustainability. New York: Columbia University Press; 12 slide summary ¥ Crutzen, P. J. (2002). Geology of mankind. Nature, 415(6867), 23. * Upward Family (2002). Funeral Program for Christopher Upward. Self-published † Hutchins, G. (2014). The illusion of separation: Exploring the cause of our current crises FLORIS. ‡ Ozbekhan, H. (1970). The predicament of mankind, quest for structured responses to growing world-wide complexities and uncertainties: A proposal. The Club of Rome.
  6. 6. 6 My Starting Point What to do with such a belief? What action can I take?
  7. 7. 7 ““How do we want to be How do we want to beremembered? We were remembered? We werethe ones who got caught the ones who got caught… trying something … trying somethingaudacious” – Majora audacious” – MajoraCarterCarter
  8. 8. 8
  9. 9. 9 Humanity’s Situation – 1 / 2 • Based on our values, we don’t have a common sense of • An aspirational collective purpose for our species, nations and communities • How such a purpose is linked to our individual life goals • How these purposes and goals are enabled and constrained by environmental, social, economic, physiological and psychological realities as (increasingly) understood by credentialed science – This lack of a purpose and goal means our efforts to “make things better” are increasingly ineffective, inefficient, too slow and at cross purpose • At the same time results (good and not good) of our past actions to achieve previous implicit and explicit purposes and goals are now becoming more and more evident • Economically, socially, environmentally • Our collective and individual circumstances now understood to be – Volatile, Uncertain, Complex and Ambiguous – Comprising of a “Global Problématique” consisting of many inter-linked “continuous critical problems” – Ozbekhan 1971 – A “mess of messes” – Ackoff 1974 – “not (just) climate change, but everything change” – Atwood 2015 – The pace at which these are negatively impacting the status quo and efforts to make things better is accelerating – the risk of significant increases in
  10. 10. 10 Humanity’s Situation* – 1 / 2 • Current attempts to set aspirational goals while well intentioned and necessary are not sufficient nor achievable based on already known credentialed science – e.g. Sustaining development is not possible on a finite planet – this is the current goal of humanity described in the Global Goals for Sustainable Development, recently official blessed by the UN General Assembly* • Development = GDP growth = increasing flows of materials and energy - forever – Most current efforts, based on currently acceptable purposes and goals, are merely “reducing unsustainability”; • This can never create “sustainable” or “reslient” outcomes – Don’t believe me? Go argue with a physicist! • Not a good tactic if you want to sustain any type of profit by mitigation of known risk! We don't have to save the world. The world is big enough to look after itself. What we have to be concerned about is whether or not the world we live in will be capable of sustaining us in it Douglas Adams * See my keynote talk for through exploration of this based reality on the work of MIT prof, John Ehrenfeld and others
  11. 11. 11 And Our Understanding & Values ARE Shifting in the Necessary Direction for Change • Instead of the 21st century; we got the 19th ! • Globalization – not so great • The Economy – unfair, not delivering; system is the problem • National governments not protecting nor representing us • Free enterprise needs a bridle (reform) • Rising fear; perceived corruption; declining hope • Convergence and now divergence between North and South • Rise of personal action [driven by deeply held values of what is right] and the sharing economy Decade long public option trends across 20 countries Global North and South
  12. 12. 12 Observation Our governments, civil-society (macro), health-care (physiological & psychological) (micro) attempting “big things” – why not our (meso) organizations? Macro: Biosphere, Our Civil Society & Economy etc. Micro: Our lived experience – mentally, emotionally, spiritually, practically, artistically & economically Meso: All our organizations – the predominant way we collaborate to meet most of our needs (formal / informal; not-for-profit / for-profit; our institutions )Small & Fast Large & Slow Multi-scale Panarchy diagram from Holling, C. S. (2001). Understanding the complexity of economic, ecological, and social systems. Ecosystems, 4(5), 0390-0405. doi:10.1007/s10021-001-0101-5 We’re not taking advantage of the feed-back and feed- forward loops – hence pace of change can’t accelerate! Huge efforts to transform the outcomes of our activities in the world, society and economy at the macro and micro level – much less at the meso level
  13. 13. 13 Challenge What could be the most practical, relevant and attractive stretch goal for humanity as a whole (including our meso organizations – including our enterprises of all types)? Macro: Biosphere, Our Civil Society & Economy etc. Micro: Our lived experience – mentally, emotionally, spiritually, practically, artistically & economically Meso: All our organizations – the predominant way we collaborate to meet most of our needs (formal / informal; not-for-profit / for-profit; our institutions ) What’s should be the goal, our chosen design brief, for these, our interlinked realities that we create – moment-to- moment? Small & Fast Large & Slow Multi-scale Panarchy diagram from Holling, C. S. (2001). Understanding the complexity of economic, ecological, and social systems. Ecosystems, 4(5), 0390-0405. doi:10.1007/s10021-001-0101-5
  14. 14. 14 Strive to sustain “the possibility that human and other life will flourish on this planet forever” – John Ehrenfeld, MIT • Audacious • Inspirational • Attractive • Universal • Practical • Values Based • Continuous You, Me, Us,You, Me, Us, Everyone, EverythingEveryone, Everything Flourishing as a Goal
  15. 15. 15 Our Vision for the Future of Enterprise • We imagine a world where human enterprises – No longer merely attempts to do less harm – Sets as their goal the flourishing of human and other life – Creates tri-impact by being tri-profitable: • Financially viable • Socially beneficial • Environmentally regenerative * Increasingly shared: see recent Flourishing & Prosperous Business Conference (, the book “The Flourishing Enterprise” by Laszlo, Brown, Ehrenfeld et. al. and the Future Fit Business Benchmark (
  16. 16. 16  Clean air & water  Vibrant soil for food  Healthy eco-systems creating materials for us & rendering our wastes harmless Trusting relationships focused on well-being with all our fellow citizens (neighbours, communities, cities, regions & countries) Businesses choose to co- operate, collaborate and compete to best meet our needs today & in the future, whilst creating the wealth to meet shared needs (education, infrastructure, etc.) Individuals choosing to strive to flourish: emotionally, spiritually, physically, practically, artistically & economically Our Understanding: Requirements for Flourishing…Big PictureBig Picture Macro: Natural Sciences Micro: Physiology, Psychology, etc.Meso: Business, Organization, etc. Macro: Social Sciences
  17. 17. 17 Future fit businesses, operating forever, would not only do no harm, but do well by only doing good … creating the possibility that human and other life will flourish on the planet forever. … throughout its value constellation A flourishing enterprise is financially rewarding, socially beneficial and environmentally regenerative WHERE WHY WHAT Implications for Enterprise Vision & Mission for the Possibility for Flourishing* * Inspired by Future Fit Business Benchmark – a project of The Natural Step Canada & 3D Investment Foundation – WHO … for all its stakeholders: founders, customers, employees, owners and communities
  18. 18. 18 = Do Good to Do Well We Believe Flourishing Enterprises are Simply Better… Compared to Profit-First Businesses, in our increasingly volatile, uncertain, complex and ambiguous world, flourishing enterprises have the possibility for: More Innovation, More Opportunity, Less Risk, More Resilience and as a Result Improved Financial Viability over the longer term Shared values and goal:Shared values and goal: sustaining the possibility forsustaining the possibility for flourishing for all foreverflourishing for all forever
  19. 19. 19 But How? How can we enable flourishing in new and existing enterprises at scale?
  20. 20. 20 Our Theory of Change – 1 / 2 • Nothing of significance happens in the world without humans working together in organizations of all kinds • Therefore to realize a future in which the possibility for flourishing for all is systematically sustained requires increasing the nature, scope and scale of “business model”* innovation • To realize this future vision: 1. The nature of business model innovation must decisively shift • Explicitly start with the of goal sustaining the possibility of flourishing for all forever • Be systematically informed by the best available science of flourishing 2. The process of business model innovation, the design, testing and improvement of such business models, and the speed of their subsequent wide-spread adoption by enterprises world-wide, must also be significantly improved * “Business model” means a representation of the necessary and sufficient concepts that describe how any human organizations defines and achieves success; like all models – business models are never “right” but they have been shown to be very useful.
  21. 21. 21 Our Theory of Change – 2 / 2 • Must engage people emotionally – Get them excited about the benefits for them, their organizations, communities about striving to flourish informed by their values • Must be empathetic – Meet people where they are – Enable them to learn in their contexts informed by their values; don’t require / prescribe • Must enable business model innovation aligned with the inter- and trans-disciplinary knowledge of flourishing – Required to avoid worst implications of our past choices on the economic, society and environment – Systematically increase scope of innovations from organizational to systems level • Must move people from analysis/forecasting to synthesis/backcasting to envisage significantly improved futures and iteratively bring them about – Move from Plan / Execute to Design / Test / Learn / Repeat – Increase speed of innovation design, testing and deployment at scale To realize this future vision at scale we must enable people in their enterprises to take new / different actions in the world
  22. 22. 22 But Why Business Models? Because they Integrate Many Views of an Enterprise Business modeling efforts integrate all the aspects of an enterprise – enabling you to learn more effectively to create the most compelling story of your endeavour YourYour BusinessBusiness ModelModel Operational PlanOperational PlanTransformation PlanTransformation Plan AssumptionsAssumptions Vision, Mission, ValuesVision, Mission, Values StrategyStrategy ContextContext
  23. 23. 23 Have Needs Work Together to Meet Our Needs & Achieve Our Goals Exist withinShare To Work Together Requires Common Language Describe Organizations – Economically, Socially, Environmentally Process Understand current, & design the future, organization that better meets our needs & achieves our goals Example Flourishing Business Canvas Tool Example ABCD Strategic Design Process Current Business Model Innovative Future Business Model CanImagine Has Understand, explore, imagine, design, test, assess, diagnose, choose, and tell stories about… Enabled by the shared language and process of organizations, together we can… So that ultimately we all have the possibility to flourish on our planet forever      Science 1-6 Theory of1-6 Theory of Change – SummaryChange – Summary
  24. 24. 24 Progress? So what’s been done to date to realize this audacious vision for humanity and our planet?
  25. 25. 25 Previous Best Practice for Business Innovation • Have Idea + Get Money + Hard Work + Hope + Luck Not… • Efficient • Effective • Reliable
  26. 26. 26 EmergingBetterPractice…
  27. 27. 27 Design your Business Model so it creates the possibility for financial profitability Your Business Model Emerging Better Practice – 1 / 3 “A business model describes the rationale of how an organization creates, delivers and captures value (financially)”* * “Business Model Generation”, by Alex Osterwalder & Yves Pigneur, 2008
  28. 28. 28 Emerging Better Practice – 2 / 3 * Business Model Canvas described in 2009 crowd-funded book “Business Model Generation”, by Alex Osterwalder based on his 2004 PhD 1+ million books* sold, used in 250 entrepreneurship programs in NA alone Some investors now see a tested business model as more useful to assess enterprise potential than business plans 5 million downloads of the Business Model Canvas: a collaborative visual tool to designesign financially profitablefinancially profitable business modelsbusiness models
  29. 29. 29 Benefits of the Business Model Canvas – the Language of Profit Prioritizing Business: 9 Questions for a Profitable Business Model Evidence of the benefits of the Business Model Canvas approach from “The business model canvas – why and how organizations around the world adopt it – a Field Report” Enables Strategic Discussion Makes Us Creative New Idea Template Fast to Use Clarifies Thinking Enable Better Conversations and Decisions Understand customers Alignment – get’s us all on the same page Shared Language for all Depts. & Locations Helps Tell Our Story to… Investors, Customers, Suppliers, New Employees Creates a Sense of Urgency Better Teamwork Focus Quickly on Best Ideas We Can Act Immediately on Our Ideas Inspires Innovation Drives Effective Collaboration Emerging Better Practice – 3 / 3
  30. 30. 30 Emerging Better Practice – Summary: Necessary but not sufficient …(almost) nothing about everyone and everything else Lots about money, and the people you financially transact with…
  31. 31. 31 Extending Better Practice • Many who believe business can be a “force for good”* have proposed extensions to the Business Model Canvas – Add things believed to be “missing” – Building entirely new canvas based on their experience and knowledge • Our research determined these extensions are not suitable to enable the design of organizations that systematically enable financial viability, social benefit and environmental regeneration The proposed extensions are largely “ad-hoc” changes to the existing financially oriented business model canvas and its variants – none are based on the level of systemic and trans-disciplinary thinking required * For Example – B Lab the NGO behind the global Benefit Corporation Certification and Legislation
  32. 32. 32 Tri-Impact Enterprises Need More Your Business Model “A business model is a description of how an enterprise defines and achieves success over time.”* Design your Business Model so it creates the possibility for flourishing: financially, socially and environmentally * Upward, A., & Jones, P. H. (2016). An ontology for strongly sustainable business models: Defining an enterprise framework compatible with natural and social science. Organization & Environment, Special Issue: Business Models for Sustainability: Entrepreneurship, Innovation, and Transformation 29(1), 1-27. doi:10.1177/1086026615592933 & download manuscript:
  33. 33. 33 The Language Challenge • A common future focused language for all the elements of a flourishing business model is required • Developing this language, plus tools and techniques to enable the design of flourishing business models is a key initiative of:
  34. 34. 34 Goal: Explicit compatibility with the inter- / trans- disciplinary credentialed science via a shared and explicit systems approach – synthesis + analysis Knowledge Challenge Physiology Physics Chemistry Biology Ecology Positive & Ecological Psychology Management, Strategy & Innovation Organization & Leadership Operations Information Systems Objective: Explicit compatibility with the inter- / trans- disciplinary credentialed science via a shared and explicit systems approach – synthesis + analysis Normative Goal: Our enterprises should strive to “sustain the possibility for human and other life to flourish on our planet forever” (Ehrenfeld, MIT) Conceptual Framework: Applied, realist, critically pragmatic* Macro MacroMeso Micro Ecological Economics Environmental & Positive Sociology * Adapted from Chapter 3 and 4 (Upward, 2013, p.p26-406)
  35. 35. 35 The Challenge to be Useful • Inconvenient truth – its even harder to design tri-profitable enterprise than a financially profitable one – Requires much broader knowledge of many more topics than currently taught in business school’s and understood by business leaders and professionals – Requires authentic, meaningful and on-going engagement of all an enterprises stakeholders based on their values and fundamental human needs • So to be useful a flourishing business model language and design tool will have to boil down huge amount of knowledge and make this knowledge accessible without preaching – Understandable – Actionable – Attractive – Complete This is a very challenging design brief with many experiments required to learn what will be and be seen as useful!
  36. 36. 36 So Where does that Leave Us? What are you doing to bring into the world the tools we need to efficiently design and test flourishing business models – embedding all the required knowledge into a new language of flourishing business models? And… how are you doing this very challenging work so that the majority of businesses can design their business models to enable the possibility for flourishing as soon as possible?
  37. 37. 37 …The quest for better tools begins… …journey to 2013 2010 2012 2013 2004 2009
  38. 38. 38 We Went Deep – 2010-2013* SSBMO Detailed Design Principles DDP1-6 SSBMO Detailed Design Principles DDP1-6 4.3-4.7 Strongly Sustainable Business Model Ontology (v1.031) Strongly Sustainable Business Model Ontology (v1.031) 7.2 -7.4, SM3, SM4 Overall Research Design + Key Theoretical Frames Overall Research Design + Key Theoretical Frames 3.2-3.5 SSBMO Build Principles BP1 & 2 SSBMO Build Principles BP1 & 2 5.4.1 Preparation: Literature Reviews to Identify “Truths” About Business Models and their Contexts, including detailed critique and review of the BMO Chapters 1 - 4 Research Objectives RO0-2 Design Principles ODP1 & 2 Research Objectives RO0-2 Design Principles ODP1 & 2 3.1-3.6 SSBMC Design Principles CDP1-3 SSBMC Design Principles CDP1-3 4.7.4 Strongly Sustainable Business Model Canvas (v1.031) Strongly Sustainable Business Model Canvas (v1.031) 7.5, SM5 Key Knowledge Input / Output Key Activity Output from Activity We went back to Osterwalder’s 2004 PhD and his financially focused Business Model Ontology (BMO); then from the Required Knowledge developed a Strongly Sustainable Business Model Ontology. From this our Canvases are derived – not from the Business Model Canvas Flourishing Business Canvas (v2) Flourishing Business Canvas (v2) ThesisPublishedAug2013 Osterwalder’sBMO/PhD2004 StartofOurResearchFall2010 * Adapted from Figure 7-14 Derivation of the Strongly Sustainable Business Model Canvas (Upward, 2013, p.840). Numbers above boxes are section numbers in thesis
  39. 39. 39 Finding Like Minds and Convening Our Community – 2012-2013 • Founding of SSBMG – Jan 2012 – Jeremy Bowes, Nabil Harfoush, Peter Jones, Antony Upward • Theory of Change Prezi – Summer 2012 – • Founding blog posts – Summer-Fall 2014 1. 2. organizational-strong-sustainability-a-review-of-the-literature/ 3. for-strongly-sustainable-organizations/ • Thesis published – Sept 2013 – – Now downloaded >1350 times
  40. 40. 40 Community Theory of Change (Discussion / Refinement Required) Theory of Change Prezi – first attempt to lay out the elements to achieve our community mission of “Our objective is to assist and accelerate the shift of Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) at any stage of development (from start-up to long lived) to a strongly sustainable mode of operations; we believe one key approach to achieving this via the design and successful implementation Strongly Sustainable Business Models ” and
  41. 41. 41 2011-2013 – Version 1* of a better Tool © Antony Upward / Edward James Consulting Ltd., 2013 All rights reserved. Based on 3 years of graduate research and conceptually better Canvas is “powered by” its own ontology – the Strongly Sustainable Business Model Ontology based on a comprehensive critique of Alex Osterwalder’s profit-first Business Model Ontology (his 2004 PhD) * The “pre-α”version of the canvas
  42. 42. 42 Reaction? (Confidential Expert Respondents – 2012) “I really liked is that it really makes youmakes you thinkthink about things that you would never consider before” Management Consultant “You've ratcheted it upYou've ratcheted it up to the next degree of specificity and made sure that it is truly about sustainable businesses. Whereas the current [tools] that I’ve seen, honestly could be applied to any kind of business” Sustainable Business NGO “The power of this thing is it’s really the first to takethe first to take the social aspect and thethe social aspect and the biophysical intobiophysical into considerationconsideration. And I haven’t seen that that any other business model That would take that into consideration” Business Architect / Professor / Consultant “This is an impressive body of work” Management Consultant “I like the tool and think it provides a great way to analyze a company” Leader Eco-Industrial Park “It’s about timeIt’s about time somebody did something like this” Author / Consultant “I recognize this firm.” “This gets the zeitgeist ofThis gets the zeitgeist of who we arewho we are, which is great” (Reacting to his business described using the Canvas) CTO Small Manufacturer “If I was starting a brand new business, a significant business today, I would use thisI would use this business model to help me define and develop a pure detailed business plan” Management Consultant
  43. 43. 43 Make it “better,better, faster,faster, strongerstronger” ? Learning by Using / TestingTesting it out someit out some moremore? But What About…? (Ideas from All Research Respondents – 2012) A better way to introduce and summarize the canvas A methodologymethodology for designing great sustainable business models? An “app” so I can do this on my tablet with my clients? A communitycommunity of people using and improving it? Ensuring the design principles align with the emerging “Future Fit Benchmark” for Flourishing Business? Training / Workshops for Social / Environmental Entrepreneurs ? A Consulting Service that uses the Canvas to Diagnose and Improve the Sustainability of Business? The design principlesdesign principles to help me come up with great answers to the questions the canvas asks? How about some more examples and case studiescase studies?
  44. 44. 44 But how about earning an income nownow? The people developing this have to have first hand experiencefirst hand experience using the tool… without it you won’t be credible when providing advice, writing a book, nor fund raising But What About…? (Ideas & Risks… from Team and Our Trusted Advisors 2013-14) Organizing an effective project, including a large crowd-funding campaign, need a lot of planning – it takes timeit takes time The “First Explorers” of this approach need help if they are to be good casecase studiesstudies? Getting one or two well known organizations as funders before ‘going public’ with the a larger community creates significant additional credibility All the current toolkit elements need to be documenteddocumented at a consistent level of detail
  45. 45. 45 2013 – Key Realizations… • If we’re going to change the world at scale we need a global collaborative approach to overtake the BMC as the tool of choice for designing business models – We simply have a better design tool for our emerging understanding of our world and our role in it – ALL business models of ALL human enterprises! • We don’t want to “just” – Help those few leaders who already “get it” – Publish a book and sell a few professional services – we want to provoke a global change movement in the purpose and culture of business • We need a comprehensive global program: community, team, toolkit, research & development, plans, budgets and legal entities to achieve this goal – We need to plan for this endeavour itself to be financially viable, socially beneficial and environmentally regenerative – sustaining the possibility for the flourishing of all our stakeholders – including ourselves! – This will take time, we need to plan for our own flourishing for the long journey – we expect to say “our overnight success took us x years of hard work” What are the key elements of success for such a program that comprehensively tests our theory of change while trying to bring it about? (aka action research)
  46. 46. 46 ““How do we want to be How do we want to beremembered? We were remembered? We werethe ones who got caught the ones who got caught… trying something … trying somethingaudacious” – Majora audacious” – MajoraCarterCarter
  47. 47. 47 Old… …Entrepreneur as Hero (Goes fast, but by themselves)
  48. 48. 48 New… …Entrepreneur as Convener (Goes far by going together)
  49. 49. 49 read content first & exclusively use the canvas in your own business now! try it out – be a case study interact with Flourishing Business Thought Leaders influence team & the community share your experience, gain from others demonstrateyour thoughtleadership toyour peers exclusive webinars preferred access to subsequent training & consulting revenue opportunities your name / organization logo in book credits discounon finalbookprice be a part of the change we need to flourish be a part ofsomething BIGBIG: a global flourishing business community haveFun! early access toimprovements This lead to anThis lead to an exploration of whyexploration of why “first followers”“first followers” might want tomight want to meaningfully engagemeaningfully engage in this project now?in this project now?
  50. 50. 50 + Our Theory for Success – 1 / 3 Go Together through Pollination* = * Compare to “viral” approaches – virus’s harm, hurt and kill their hosts in their quest to propagate – pollination creates new life & flourishing
  51. 51. 51 Pollination is the fastest way to Get Committed Followers to create a Movement* • Every first-mover must have guts to the “lone crackpot” until they have followers – First movers need to be easy to follow – Fun! Useful! Reputation Enhancing! – Relationship not Transactions (social and financial) • First-followers are a first-mover’s equals – They have guts too – Its about the nascent movement not the first-mover • Even a small crowd of first-followers is news – and the news is both followers and first-movers • Later followers tend to emulate the first-followers not the leader • With sufficient followers you have momentum and a movement is born • Now the tables are turned – the people not following are at the risk of being left out – but its not to late to be part of the “in-crowd” – if they hurry – Leader crosses the chasm and enter the tornado (Geoffery Moore) * (Thanks to Brad Zarnett @TSSS for reminding me of this!) Anyone can be leaderful – not everyone will be a leader all the time - leaderful behaviour is the power behind the moment NOT the first- mover (even pollinators take a break now and again)
  52. 52. 52 Our Theory for Success – 2 / 3 Experiment to Gain Experience
  53. 53. 53 Theory of Success – 3 / 3 My Perspective • Put the goal at the centre of everything – not the organization – Aim high – what if.., imagine a world where… • Trust acting in alignment with your values will attract those who want to help you succeed – People are drawn to your “why” not your organization and its brand • Be a mentor – not a hero – everyone else is a hero – offer them genuine help and gifts • Practice planful co-opportunism – Cast a wide net – Play it forwards – Co-generate the required serendipity – “hope is not a management strategy” – Pay attention when amazing serendipity happens (and it does) – Spend effort where people pull you • Consistently apply the 6 co-operative principles* – We always do better together – when we care for each other – Start to build the relationships / shared experience to realize the long term vision of a “Co-operative of Flourishing Enterprise Innovators” • Open to all who share in the goal of realizing the vision of human enterprises enabling the possibility for flourishing for all forever • Those who wish to co-operate to enable the possibility for flourishing for themselves and their stakeholders around the world – environmentally, socially and economically – Co-operation is not a zero sum or negative some game when scaled – unlike other legal structures • Continuous improvement – always in everything – Plan-do-check-act / use the method of scientific inquiry in our “action research” in the world *
  54. 54. 54 Our Theory for Success – Detail • Enjoy Being the Change – Authentic – purpose / passion driven informed by our values – Focus on Small / Medium Business (they can change more easily) • Existing and Start-ups – Think Local, Adapt Global – Radical Transparency with Appropriate Protection • Creative Commons Licensing – B Corp Certified – Scoring >150/200 • Steps toward a Vision – Iterative via multiple “Minimum Viable Products” (MVP) over time – Compliance with The Natural Step Sustainability Principles • Powered by the Crowd – Committed & Engage – Individuals & Organizations • Research Enabling Continuous Improvement • Pollinate a Global Community – Follow co-operative principles – Mutually supportive eco-system • Highly involved stakeholders • Sharing of opportunities and revenues • Maximize local opportunities, minimize flying around! – Collaborative writing / testing / governance – Spread the word – Learn by Doing & from Each Other – Use leverage to the max B Corps / Locally oriented businesses
  55. 55. 55 ( ) Feb 2014 – Toolkit Core Development Team Convened All Members of the OCAD University sLab SSBMGroup* Bill Craig Edmonton Stephen Davies Toronto (via Wales) Doug Gilbert Denver You? TBD Peter Jones Toronto (via Dayton, OH) Alexandre Joyce Montréal Patricia Kambitsch Toronto (via Dayton, OH) Florian Lüdeke- Freund Hamburg Harry Stoddart Peterborough, Ontario Sebastian Straube Berlin Bruce Stewart Toronto (via Vancouver) Antony Upward Toronto (via Birmingham) Bob Willard Whitby, Ontario Manager (Advisor) ( ) Visual Design Lead (Contributor) 1. Introduction & Story Editor (Contributor) 2. Tool Lead (Contributor) ( ) ( ) ( )( ) ( ) 3. Design Principles Lead (Contributor) 4. Methods Lead (Contributor) ( ) ( ) ( ) 5. Patterns & Case Studies Lead (Contributor) Roles West East ( ) Visual Designers Kelly Kornet Toronto Additional Team Members Kritika Sharma Toronto (via India) ( ) * Strategic Innovation Lab Strongly Sustainable Business Model Group – Leo Mburu Toronto (via Liverpool) First Explorer Community Animator( )
  56. 56. 56 Core Team Planned the Program • Developed our business model– using the SSBMCanvas! – For the project – down-to-action viable now striving towards long term flourishing – For the long term for-profit business – aspirational long term vision for a flourishing enterprise • Developed comprehensive plan, including: – Vision, mission, strategy, values and tactics – Business Model is backup – Established initial roles, responsibilities, norms of behaviour – Developed detailed project plan and budget • Seeking funding while “just getting on with it” – sweat equity while searching for paid work that both advances the project and wider practice and pollinates the community • Made all this available in public – – As per radical transparency required for flourishing – “Sunlight is the best disinfectant” F2F / Virtual Convening Workshops May 2013; F2F Core Team Workshops Toronto (OCADU sLab) Feb 2014 – “All for One, One for All” (everyone invested, including paid their own way to attend)
  57. 57. 57 I need helpI need help to designto design my bettermy better businessbusiness OthersOthers working to convince the rest to change We haveWe have thethe betterbetter tools youtools you needneed But where to start? Help Those Who Have AlreadyAlready Decided to Do Something Different I need helpI need help to design myto design my flourishingflourishing businessbusiness Our Hypothesis Our Hypothesis … WhateverWhatever their starting point and reasoning “Blue Suits” “Green Suits” Tell meTell me again, what’sagain, what’s the problem Ithe problem I need to fix?need to fix? “PinstripeSuits”
  58. 58. 58 Possibility for: More Innovation More Resilience More Opportunity with Less Risk We Imagine… Better Tools toBetter Tools to Help Apply thatHelp Apply that Logic & ScienceLogic & Science A NewA New Logic forLogic for FlourishingFlourishing EnterpriseEnterprise Toolkit ContentsToolkit Contents • Tool (canvas) • Design Principles for Flourishing Business • Methods for effective use of the tool while applying the principles • Patterns and case studies Based onBased on the Latestthe Latest ScienceScience Doing GoodDoing Good toto Do WellWell
  59. 59. 59 Impact We Want Toolkit to Have… We believe SMEs,We believe SMEs, with their smallwith their small management teamsmanagement teams have the mosthave the most ability to changeability to change the most andthe most and fastestfastest
  60. 60. 60 Passing Benefit Corporation Legislation Passing Benefit Corporation Legislation We Believe a Toolkit forWe Believe a Toolkit for Flourishing Enterprise DesignFlourishing Enterprise Design can, helpcan, help ALLALL these flourishingthese flourishing enterprise innovation leaders beenterprise innovation leaders be more successful… and manymore successful… and many moremore besides!besides!
  61. 61. 61 Toolkit to be published as a “book” – but not your typical business “book”: 1. “Book” is not the end-goal, but a key enabler to pollinate a global movement 2. Inspired by design ethos of Business Model Generation 3. Self-publish initially • Find Agent & Publisher – Marketing, Distribution, Translations • “app” – Design Tool – Business Learning Game • Community Revenue Opportunities via – Training Service “Toolkit” – Consulting Service “Toolkit” – Education / Classroom “Toolkit” – Sustainability Entrepreneur’s “Toolkit” – Industry Specific “Toolkits” – Sustainability Maturity Level Specific “Toolkits” • Full alignment with emerging Future Fit Business Benchmark – Measurement “Toolkit” • Best Practices • More Case Studies Next Later
  62. 62. 62 Proposed Table of Contents*† * Book describes version 1.0 of our Flourishing Business Innovation Toolkit – which includes the Flourishing Business Canvas tool. † Learning suggests we’ll replace “Business” with “Enterprise” as more inclusive – i.e. Flourishing Enterprise Canvas, Flourishing Enterprise (Model) Innovation, etc.
  63. 63. 63 After “Book” is Published… • Flourishing Business Canvas will be made available under a Creative Commons License – Free to use commercially & non-commercially* – Minimize barriers to uptake of the key element of the toolkit to maximize likely of impact at scale • Toolkit will be first product offering of a global for-profit co-operative business of “Flourishing Enterprise Innovators” – Book will be first revenue stream based on the Toolkit intellectual property • Initially focus sales on Flourishing Enterprise Innovation leaders globally – early adopters • Then as market continues to shift on-going sales for the – early majority and beyond – overtaking Business Model Generation sales and impact replacing the Business Model Canvas with the Flourishing Business Canvas as it is accepted as a better tool to design better businesses – Other revenue streams will be: • Branded training, workshops, labs • Certification • Apps and other electronic forms of the IP • Industry Specific versions etc. – Members wish to co-operate to enable the possibility for flourishing for themselves and their stakeholders around the world • Members will be individuals and enterprises of all types who share in the goal of realizing the vision of human enterprises enabling the possibility for flourishing for all forever • Members expected to mostly be legal enterprises (inc. sole proprietors) not individuals – First right of refusal for joining to: • FBIToolkit Core Team Members and Volunteers (see next slides) • FBIToolkit First Explorers (see later slides) • Strategic Partners, Marque Funders and CrowdFunders • SSBMGroup Community Members • A not-for-profit Research Institute will co-ordinate relevant global on-going research – Opportunities for on-going partnerships with education and research institutions • An independent not-for-profit community will act as a global hub and clearing house for all flourishing enterprise innovators (incl. but not exclusive to users of the co-ops toolkits) * Current version must be licensed before use – at no cost via the Flourishing Business Innovation Toolkit “First Explorers” program Toolkit project ends with the publication of the book – the program plan (incl. co-op legal entity) then uses the book as a pollination tool to scale the impact of the Toolkit in order realize the vision and complete the testing of our theory of change
  64. 64. 64 Plan to Create Toolkit: Releases to v1.0 and beyond “Pre-α” Today - α β v1.0 >v1.0 • v1 canvas + various levels of thinking on other topics – Challenge: Not easy to learn or use • Find Marquee Funders – 2-4 Organizations / Independently Wealthy Individuals • Core Devt. Team Creates α-Toolkit. incl. v2 canvas • Core Devt. Team uses α toolkit to gain 1st hand experience – Own business / training / consulting / research ∀ α Toolkit used by 20-80 “First Explorers” – Animation of and co-creation with this community is required ∀ α Toolkit published (print-on-demand “Handbook”) • Core Devt. Team Creates β-Toolkit in light of experience with α • Crowd-funding – 500+ Individuals and organizations • Crowd-funding collaborators use β-Toolkit – Experiences shared within collaboration community • Core Devt. Team Creates v1.0 Toolkit described in book • Book released • Co-op, Research Institute and Community Hub formally launched • Toolkit evolution and expansion begins Core Devt.Core Devt. TeamTeam Gains 1Gains 1stst HandHand ExperienceExperience Core Devt. TeamCore Devt. Team Learn fromLearn from CollaboratorsCollaborators
  65. 65. 65 What Was Done Next? So there is a team with a theory for success to “power” a theory of change to realize an audacious vision, there is a plan for developing the first version of the Toolkit in a way that pollinates the change to the next level of scale… But… at this point the team only had a pre-alpha canvas which was clearly not ready for the prime time and very limited experience for its effective use to help people design flourishing business models…
  66. 66. 66 A tool that provides a common language in a useful visual framework to enable you to collaboratively sketch, prototype, design, improve, communicate, understand, measure, diagnose and tell stories about your flourishing business model Oct 2014 – Introducing …v2 Based on feedback on v1, Based on feedback on v1,canvas was renamed and canvas was renamed andmade more attractive made more attractiveand easier to use and easier to usethrough collaboration through collaborationwith professional with professionaldesigners on Core Team designers on Core Team& OCADU MDes SFI & OCADU MDes SFIstudents paid through a students paid through a small grant small grant
  67. 67. 67 Based on 3 years of now peer reviewed research*; Built on Alex Osterwalder’s 2004 PhD – the basis of the very practical and successful Business Model Canvas Oct 2014 – Introducing …v2† † The “α”version of the canvas – now the key component of the Toolkit for Flourishing Business Innovation * Upward, A., & Jones, P. H. (2016). An ontology for strongly sustainable business models: Defining an enterprise framework compatible with natural and social science. Organization & Environment, Special Issue: Business Models for Sustainability: Entrepreneurship, Innovation, and Transformation 29(1), 1-27. doi:10.1177/1086026615592933 & download manuscript:
  68. 68. 68 V2.0© Antony Upward / Edward James Consulting Ltd., 2014 All rights reserved. Flourishing Business Canvas – the language of tri-impactful enterprise: 16 necessary and sufficient questions to describe a flourishing business model: financially, socially, environmentally A Business Model Tool for Tri-Profitable Enterprise Design
  69. 69. 69 Key Points About Flourishing Business Canvas – 1 / 2 • Didn’t delete concepts compared to BMC • All 9 questions still there – you can move stickies that describe the profit making elements of a business model from the BMC to the FBC without any changes • AND then you’ll start to see, through the additional and expanded questions, new opportunities and new risks – that come from the integrated view of the economic, social and environment
  70. 70. 70 Key Points About Flourishing Business Canvas – 2 / 2 * • A common language for describing and designing flourishing organizations • Builds understanding of interconnections of the organization with the world: Economically, Socially, Environmentally • Enables broader, deeper and richer conversations about all aspect of value co-creation (and destruction) • Provides context to enable collaboration – enabling teams to align on key strategic decisions The Flourishing Business Canvas: A key component of a comprehensive innovation toolkit to collaboratively think through all the aspects of an enterprise to create the possibility for flourishing – sketch, prototype, design, improve, communicate, understand, measure, diagnose and tell stories * Separate articles, presentations, talks, videos, workshops, labs introduce / explain / give examples of the Flourishing Business Canvas
  71. 71. 71 Progress Since Fall 2014 • Process • Academic – Credentialing / publication – Research • Praxis / Project – “The Toolkit” – First Explorers – Collaboration with other projects • In SSBMG • Outside – Co-developing, applying, testing content – Marquee Funders • Practice – Go to market trials / action learning • Plan do check act – Recent Validation – Customers • Community – SSBMG – the driving force behind it all – New ideas – New people – Sharing / collaborating
  72. 72. 72 The Feed-back and Feed-forward Loops of Planful Co-opportunism A new type of entrepreneurial / movement making – it looks & feels very different from the mainstream / silicon valley “hero” approach
  73. 73. 73 Academic Credentialing • And as conference paper – Jones, P. H., & Upward, A. (2014). Caring for the future: The systemic design of flourishing enterprises. Proceedings of The Third Symposium of Relating Systems Thinking and Design (RSD3), Oslo, Norway, 3(1) 1-8. Manuscript with Links to Presentation • Original research published in high quality peer reviewed journal • Upward, A., & Jones, P. H. (2016). An ontology for strongly sustainable business models: Defining an enterprise framework compatible with natural and social science. Organization & Environment, Special Issue: Business Models for Sustainability: Entrepreneurship, Innovation, and Transformation 29(1), 1-27. doi:10.1177/1086026615592933 & download manuscript: • To our knowledge includes first critique in academic press of Osterwalder’s original Business Model Ontology from any perspective More on the way + quasi academic / practitioner book chapter Uniquely amongst all other ‘sustainable’ business model tools proposed, not only is the Flourishing Business Canvas conceptually powered by its own formally defined ontology informed by systems-oriented economic, environmental, social, organizational and psychological science, this ontology has been credentialed via the peer-review publication process
  74. 74. 74 Academic Research – Next Steps In addition overall action research approach funded by “sweat equity”: – SSBMGroup Cultural Flourishing Business Models project received a small SSHRC grant last year and is now applying for a larger Insight Grant – University of Ontario Institute of Technology (UOIT) Prof. Dr. Rob Elkington is applying for a SSHRC Insight and other grants for a significant longitudinal comparative study of the utility of the Toolkit on the Flourishing Leadership outcomes for Social Entrepreneurs in Ontario (Durham Region) and South Africa (Cape Town Region)
  75. 75. 75 2013-16 First Explorers Program • 43 individuals and organizations have signed free First Explorer license to use α-Toolkit in return for providing feedback – Further ~10 in process of signing agreement with ~3 per month applying since Jan 2015 – Leo Mburu First Explorer Community Animator recruited / volunteered (un-paid) to administer this program and more if / when funds available (1-2 hours per week; expect backlog to take months to clear) • First Explorers include: – Project Core Team (using Toolkit in go-to-market efforts – see later slides) – School for Social Entrepreneurs-Canada – Forum for the Future – Durham Region Community Innovation Lab – OCADU via RECODE Impact Collective – Global Leadership Initiatives Significant opportunities to further animate this community to enable them and the project to realize the full value of this program
  76. 76. 76 First Explorer Program – Next Steps • Animate the community – get them using the Flourishing Business Canvas and reporting experiences via GoogleGroup – • Requires – Mural Training – Handbook • Short form of final book – will contain other elements of the α-Toolkit – Design Principles, Method, Patterns & Cases • Co-create this handbook / test it with the First Explorers • Provides sellable artefact / give-away for people we’re co-creating value with our professional, learning and coaching services Pending Funding
  77. 77. 77 Collaboration with Related Endeavours • The Toolkit and other projects inside and outside SSBMG are highly symbiotic since they share the same values and vision to help enterprises sustain the possibility for flourishing for all forever informed by the best available scientifically credentialed knowledge – Extensive collaborations to these projects mutual benefit started and continue • The Toolkit project is actively exploring collaborations with a range of others who share the Toolkit project’s vision, values and goals, facilitated by the SSBMG
  78. 78. 78 Shared Science-Based Approach Key Symbiotic Global Initiatives – 1 / 2 When we implement the business model we’ve designed with the intention of creating the possibility for flourishing, how can we assess if we’ve done enough? Described by Flourishing Business Canvas Defined by Future-Fit Business Benchmark If our business is not able to attain the future-fit benchmark goals, can we collaboratively improve our business model to enable that level of performance? Future-Fit Business Goals and KPIs Your Business Model Flourishing Business Canvas ( Future-Fit Business Benchmark (
  79. 79. 79 Does Your Enterprise Measure-up? State in Baseline year Competitor Goals Competitor Current State Your Enterprise today Current state Your Tri- Profitable Enterprise tomorrow Unsustainable Past  Flourishing Future  Self- defined short-term goals Where is theWhere is the Enterprise’sEnterprise’s Visionary?Visionary? Where do the business models lie?Where do the business models lie? (current & target)(current & target) Future- Fit state Best current knowledge Slide adapted with permission from / Dr. Bob Willard – Presentation to Strongly Sustainable Business Model Group
  80. 80. 80 Key Symbiotic Global Initiatives – 2 / 2 When we implement the business model we’ve designed with the intention of creating the possibility for flourishing, how can we implement our desired our enterprise design? Described by Flourishing Business Canvas Harbourfront Centre & REFOCUS ( Flourishing Business Innovation Toolkit ( If we commit to truly sustainably operations, and seek to demonstrate that this enhances our performance, how can we transform the organization to make this possible? Science-Based Approach Developed using the REFOCUS Program Model Your Business ModelYour Business Model Work underway to fully align with Science Your TransformationalYour Transformational ProgramProgram
  81. 81. 81 Possible Additional Symbiotic Global Initiatives • B Lab / Benefit Corporations • Business Alliance for Local Living Economies • International Living Futures Institute – Living Building Challenge, Living Product Challenge, Living Community Challenge – Declare, Just and Reveal Labelling Standards • Transition Towns • Future Fit Foundation • GenuineWealth Foundation • Forum for the Future • SustainAbility • Aim2Flourish / FlourishPrizes – Affirmed by UN Principles for Responsible Management Education (UN PRME) • Global Responsible Leadership Initiative (GRLI) • ThrivAbility Foundation • Sustainable Design Awards – Originated at OCADU and now Province Wide • Social Business Models There are many other initiatives underway around the global that share, albeit often using different labels, the vision of a world in which enterprises sustain the possibility for all to flourish forever – here are some we’re keen to work with – many of whom we’ve some initial contact What ever we call it – all these folks are in the same Big Tent
  82. 82. 82 Marquee Funders • Seeking to raise project funding via donation from 2-3 funders • aka R&D / working capital for t he co-operative – A key pollination test - is our flower attractive enough to a funding bee? • Depending on funding source may need a strategic partner through whom to flow donations – Project team members are private companies / individuals who need to be paid – not a employees of a charity, NGO, etc. • Seeking Funders and partners – Who share our vision to accelerate the achievement of the future-fitness of all human enterprises and their investors globally – That work with same groups we seek to help - helping start-ups, existing small and medium enterprises (for-profit, not-for-profit, social enterprises, hybrid, co- operatives, Benefit Corporations, etc.) and (impact) investors – Whose work would be enhanced through the use of better visual, collaborative, systemic tools like ours, – Who wish to get involved and shape the project, – Who can provide material, relationships capital, practical support to secure grant funding
  83. 83. 83 Funding Call Funding of $300K will: • Fund the activities in Phase 1 and the start of Phase 2 of the project plan (see appendix) α-Toolkit Handbook – Professional public presence – Collaboration platform to enable growing community to work effectively together – First Explorers Community Animation to get meaningful feedback on α- Toolkit – Talk, workshop, lab and professional services development • Be used for professional services of: Project Manager, Core- Team members in Canada and elsewhere, First Explorer Community Animator, Web/Social Media Pollinator, Visual Designer, Writer/Editor, Videographer
  84. 84. 84 Go-to-Market Trials – Action Learning Brands Under Active Testing in the Market via Minimal Viable Offerings – Flourishing Business – learning services for all – – Services for SME’s and Growth Stage Impact Investors – Lean4Flourishing – Services for Tri-Impact Entrepreneurs and Early Stage Impact Investors – Personal brands invested • Antony Upward, Harvey Weisfeld, Stephen Davies, Bruce Stewart, Russ Christianson, Ondine Hogeboom • All First Explorers, not all Core Team! – Legal Entities powering the Brands • Edward James Consulting Ltd, Wiser Solutions, Transformation by Design, Bruce Stewart Consulting, Rhythm Communications, Ondine Hogeboom Consulting – Via professional services communities • Global Leadership International Going-to-market not only helps us achieve some financial sustainability as we gain 1st hand practical experience using the α-Toolkit, it demonstrates to funders the market reaction and it informs value propositions and revenue model for long term business – co-operative of flourishing enterprise innovators!
  85. 85. 85 2014-16 Keynotes, Workshops & Labs: Developed* • Introductory – Story – Why I need a flourishing business model – 3 min audio / visual animation (prezi) – 2 x 10 minute videos – more on the way – 20, 30 and 60 minute Keynote talk • Introduce concept of flourishing, how this applies to enterprises, the value of the business model design approach supported by appropriate tools – 4 hour introduction hands-on workshop • Co-Creative Skills for Collaborating Entrepreneurs & Stakeholders – 2 and 4 hour workshop • Hands on case study of business models of existing B Corp’s in the Food Sector (Analytic) – 20 minutes – gamified, 2 hour, 4 hours • Experiential design (Synthetic) – Case study based • 1 hour – Co-operative Business Succession • Full-day – Design an innovation for an existing business – Role playing simulation a B Corp • Half-day and full-day – Designing the business model of a new enterprise – Case “Dirt-to-Shirt in 500km” value constellation (Apparel) – Case Green Building – includes both product design (the building) and Business Model Design to build/operate the building) • Labs – Full-day with early-stage social enterprises with entrepreneurs and their stakeholders – 2 and 4 hour with later stage entrepreneurs: explore their for-profit business model (risk & opportunity identification) To start to share the Flourishing Experience and gain experience in its use we have developed and a range of workshops and labs * 1 page briefs for each of these workshops available and labs available
  86. 86. 86 2014-16 Keynotes, Workshops & Labs: Delivered • 40+ workshops and labs delivered to over 1000 attendees in 5 countries in last 20 months (to Feb 2016) • Of these delivery was funded only at the following (in this order): – Global Forum for Business as Agent for World Benefit, Fowler Center for Sustainable Value Case Western Reserve University (Attendees paid) – Plymouth University Business School Futures Entrepreneurship Centre (Local Funds) – Hamburg University Faculty of Economics and Business (Local Funds) – OCAD University DesignJam (OCE Campus Linked Accelerator) • 2 half-day, 1 full day, 4 x 2 hour workshops at Big Tent event – Sustainable Corps at Centre for Social, OCADU Impact Collective (Attendees paid) • Keynote, 2 two-hour and 2 half-day – University of Toronto MSc Sustainability Management (Program Funds) – Durham Region Community Innovation Lab (OCE Ontario Social Impact Voucher pilot) – OCAD Impact Collective (McConnell RECODE) • Delivery will be Q1 2016 – EIT-Climate-KIC Pan-EU Climate Change adaptation and mitigation program – flourishing business design for innovation & sustainability learning materials development and delivery – School for Social Entrepreneurs – Ontario • Delivery in 2016 Based on very positive feedback from initial delivery, significant interest in further funded delivery by other OCE Funded RICs via OCAD U DesignJam / OCE CLA funding, EU Funded pan-European Climate-KIC program, School for Social Entrepreneurs-Canada and others
  87. 87. 87 2014-16 Keynotes, Workshops & Labs: Delivered – Selection 40+ workshops and labs40+ workshops and labs delivered to over 1000delivered to over 1000 attendees in 5 countries inattendees in 5 countries in last 20 months (to Feb 2016)last 20 months (to Feb 2016)
  88. 88. 88 Learning Services – Next Steps • Flourishing Enterprise Design for Innovation – Competency Model – Learning Materials – Delivery Services • Complete Flourishing Enterprise Curriculum – Entrepreneurs / Start-ups (early-growth) – Leaders / Managers Existing SMEs (change) – Civil Society Leaders – civil servants, NGOs, Charities (transformation / not-for-profit)
  89. 89. 89 Integrated Flourishing Enterprise Coaching / Professional Services Model In our service design we integrate coaching and professional services to maximize the client’s depth and speed of learning on all fronts through a consistent plan-do-check-act approach – we believe this is a significant innovation and differentiator
  90. 90. 90 2014-15 Professional Services: Developed • Integrated Coaching, Assessment, Diagnosis, Design and Value Discovery services developed* and promoted to tri-impact – Investors – Encouragers (hubs, incubators, etc.) – Enterprises (for-profit, not-for-profit) – Consultants • Significant hopper of opportunities / clients developed from scratch • Significant work undertaken to build relationships needed to create qualified funnel of paid work * See separate presentation for details
  91. 91. 91 2014-15 Professional Services: Offers* • Our approach helps tri-impact enterprises, their funders and stakeholders effectively undertake strategy assessment and development at many steps of their journey A Start-up From concept to proven business model B Find Funding to Scale Ensuring capability to grow and readiness for funding C Enterprise Succession From decision to sell through new owner control D Enterprise Innovation New product / service design and associated business model development and testing E Value Network Innovation Multi-stakeholder collaborations to resolve systemic barriers to tri-impact creation F Tri-Impact Performance Assessment Financial, social and environmental reporting, risk analysis and opportunity identification The services are designed help tri-impact enterprises flourish at all stages of development * 1 page briefs for each of these service offers available
  92. 92. 92 • Assess Quality and Completeness of a Business Plan for Impact Investor or Impact Investment Applicant – Environmentally, Socially, Economically – Template Report and Delivery Method • Co-operative Succession Process – From: current owner considering selling – To: New co-operative operating business – 18 Step Succession Process 2014-15 Professional Services: Examples* * Longer briefs and / or template deliverables available
  93. 93. 93 2012-15 Growing the Community • SSBMG is a “knowledge mobilization” action research community hosted by the OCADU Strategic Innovation Lab convened by Prof. Nabil Harfoush and co-founded with Prof. Peter Jones, Prof. Jeremy Bowes and Antony Upward • On-line Presence: (LinkedIn Group) twitter.SSBMGcom • A number of initiatives undertaken as collaborations by members – Toolkit, Flourishing Cultural Business Models, Future Fit Business Benchmark underway – Methods for Flourishing Enterprise Design and Patterns of Flourishing Enterprises under discussion • SSBMG membership growth continues – 2012-2014 – reached 300 members – 2015 Jan-Oct – added 225 members (total at 525) – 2015 Nov-Jan 2016 – added 25 (total 550) – All continents represented; Solid mix of practitioners, researchers and graduate students • SSBMG activity is growing – Meeting live regularly F2F/Virutal • Feb 2016 was 48th monthly meeting • Attendees – solid mix of F2F (Toronto) and elsewhere (Timezone challenges) • 2 projects secured small grants to fund OCADU MDes SFI students All work of to plan, organize, promote, run monthly meetings and initial projects in the SSBMG has been undertaken without funding. Detailed report of SSBMG activity and benefits to OCAD U available Improved Group Governance Model Under-Discussion
  94. 94. 94 2014-16 Validation / Feedback • The lack of a language, tool, design principles and method for flourishing business is a recognized problem that needs to be addressed – Existing business model design tools outdated or incomplete – Enhancements to current tools • Don’t go far enough – missing aspects of economic, social, environmental • Aren’t rigorous – not based on applicable available inter-disciplinary science • People are actively looking for a practical solution to this highly complex problem • Flourishing Business Canvas is starting to be recognized as first practical solution – its ready for thought-leaders to undertake significant experiments in many situations • Our theory of change, overall project approach and plans are seen as audacious, but possible – Continuing to attract interest, positive feedback and encouragement Positive feedback from potential clients, funders, academic reviewers, professional colleagues, workshop and lab participants from around the world
  95. 95. 95 Other Evidence • Number, growth and wide-spread location of SSBMG members and First Explorers • People finding us despite lack of SEO – LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook, – Across platforms community has ~2500 social media “follows” • >1350 Downloads of original thesis – US, Canada, Germany, UK, China, Denmark, Netherlands, France, Brazil, other (131) – 8 cites of original thesis, – 3 cites of 2016 peer-reviewed summary • >5500 Views of ~3 min audio/visual intro Additional evidence we’re building some presence and beginning to be noticed
  96. 96. 96 Movement’s First-Followers • Appears we appear to be attractive enough + timing is right – context is changing (COP21, SDGs, etc.) – More people changing their plans to align with / build on ours – Pollination is starting to work • Long term collaborators are investing even more – Core team – particularly mgt team – Peter, Stephen, Bruce, Bill, Antony + Florian, Bob, Harry, Patricia – Close Friends & Volunteers – Harvey, Russ, Ondine, Javier, Claire, Krittika, Kelly, Andrew, Leo • Additional first-followers starting to respond to our open invitation to collaborate with us – “How can we help?” – “How can I benefit?” Moving from “nut case” to “bleeding edge innovation”… will ridicule from main-stream be far behind?
  97. 97. 97 What’s Next for 2016? Wow, given you’ve no money and no formal organization you’ve made a ton of progress on many fronts… so what’s next for 2016?
  98. 98. 98 Next Steps for 2016 • Continue learning and professional services work to gain first-hand experience and revenue • Seek strategic partner to help us find and flow funding from 1-3 marquee funders • Use funds to: – Animate First Explorer Community • Accelerate getting additional feedback • Provide Handbook and Active Assistance – Prepare to pollinate community to support for the co-creation with them of the book / toolkit
  99. 99. 99 Personal Assessment Which way will the wind blow in the first months of 2016: will these clouds clear or is a storm gathering?
  100. 100. 100 Toolkit Project: Personal Assessment – Jan 2016 – 1 / 2 • Very limited financial support for all activities to date – One very small academic grant to fund students – Time to deliver (not develop) some workshops and labs has been compensated – Financial sustainability of further participation by core team in question • Significant pro-bono support from many – 5+ years of investment by convening entrepreneur • Very largely sweat equity / significant financial opportunity cost – Core Team Members • Including funding travel to meeting in Toronto from around the world – OCAD University • Brand, network, space and facilities • Canvas is ready for use, documentation of other elements of the α-Toolkit is lacking α- Toolkit Handbook is required to make it easier for people to use the Canvas – Ability of First Explorers to use Canvas without significant support not possible Funding the project will enable us to retain the commitment from the people with the passion, knowledge and skills to build on the significant achievements to date
  101. 101. 101 Toolkit Project: Personal Assessment – Jan 2016 – 2 / 2 • Public face of the project doesn’t have necessary level of professional look and feel be attractive to future participants – Website, social media presence, videos, presentations, documentation, etc. • First explorer program membership continues to grow, but majority of existing members mostly inactive – Comprehensive and multi-facetted animation of this community is urgently required to ensure these pollinators see the Toolkit as “good” and “useful”, are willing to pollinate their network during the next phase of pollination, and provide the project get meaningful feedback required for continuous improvement • Significant effort has been expended to generate a funnel of opportunities for core team members to gain paid hands-on deep dive experience in the use the Toolkit with enterprises of all kinds, but finding customers #1, #2 and #3 has been very challenging – Finding early customers for new services is always challenging; unsurprising – Key way to speed up finding paid work is via relationship-based introductions to potential customers from people/organizations they already trust A strategic partner willing to use their relationships to help the project find funding and relevant paid work will enable the momentum to continue to grow
  102. 102. 102 Challenges & Opportunities for a Strategic Partner Our On-Going & Open Invitation Join us in founding a Values-Aligned Dream Team of First Movers to create and pollinate the Global Flourishing Enterprise Movement We Urgently Need: How much value could this create for you? Which of your challenges could this improve? Challenges & Opportunities for Marquee Funders Challenges & Opportunities for Flourishing Business Innovation Toolkit Project/Program Growing GlobalGrowing Global Community of FlourishingCommunity of Flourishing Enterprise Designers,Enterprise Designers, Consultants, Researchers…Consultants, Researchers…
  103. 103. 103 @FlourishingBiz @StronglySustain #SSBMG a project by members of ThisworkislicensedunderaCreativeCommonsAttribution- NonCommercial-ShareAlike4.0UnportedLicense.Permissionsbeyondthescope ofthislicensemaybeavailableat FlourishingBusinessesInnovationToolkit–TheStorySoFar… Version1.12016-02-09 ©EdwardJamesConsultingLtd,SomeRightsReserved Appendix / Back-up
  104. 104. 104 Proposal*: A Project to Create Our Business† 1. Business Proposal • Our Declaration of Purpose – Our Beliefs and Commitments – Our Vision, Mission, Strategy, Values • Our Theory of Change • Tactics: Our Learning & Development Program • Metrics: Our Definition of Acceptable Success Business Models • Project & On-Going 2. Book Proposal • Describes version 1.0 of our Toolkit • First product of our business 3. Core Development Team Roles and Responsibilities 4. Detail Plans • For project to create Toolkit v1.0 and to establish our business * Described in 9 separate documents –; Draft detailed budget prepared. † Working name: Co-operative of Flourishing Enterprise Innovators: Members wish to co-operate to enable the possibility for flourishing for themselves and their stakeholders around the world. Members will be individuals and enterprises of all types who share in the goal of realizing the vision of human enterprises enabling the possibility for flourishing for all forever. Members expected to mostly be legal enterprises (inc. sole proprietors) not individuals. “First right of refusal” for joining to: • FBIToolkit Core Team Members and Volunteers (see previous slides) • FBIToolkit First Explorers (see previous slides) • Strategic Partners, Marque Funders and Crowd Funders • SSBMGroup Community Members
  105. 105. 105 Our Business Vision • Our business strives to only create positive environmental, social, and economic value for all its stakeholders, contributing to the possibility that human and other life will flourish on our single shared planet forever: we do well by doing good, while continuously endeavouring to do no harm.* • We will achieve this vision in timeframes that minimize the harm to the flourishing of human and other life. * The goal for a Flourishing Business, with minor changes, from the Future-Fit Benchmark for Truly Sustainable Business
  106. 106. 106 Our Business Mission 1. Fomenting a system level change: the permanent shift in the goals, operating logic* and outcomes of all Small and Medium Enterprises so they proactively enable resilient sustainability as the possibility for flourishing. 2. Creating a passionate, values-driven, for- impact and for social purpose organization that aims to consistently produce an acceptable level of environmental, social and monetary profit for the foreseeable future. * Strategies, business models and processes
  107. 107. 107 Our Strategy • We believe that the most powerful lever we have to complete our mission is the development, delivery and continuous improvement of a multi-faceted toolkit that helps SME business people world-wide undertake the required shift in goals, operating logic and outcomes. • Our business strives to have authentic enjoyable relationships with all stakeholders: behaving at all times in an ethical, radically transparent and open manner, striving for win-win while being place aware and aligned with the science of flourishing. Our Values
  108. 108. 108 Overall Plan to Create Toolkit: Releases to v1.0 and beyond “Pre-α” Today - α β v1.0 >v1.0 • v1 canvas + various levels of thinking on other topics – Challenge: Not easy to learn or use • Find Marquee Funders – 2-4 Organizations / Independently Wealthy Individuals • Core Devt. Team Creates α-Toolkit. incl. v2 canvas • Core Devt. Team uses α toolkit to gain 1st hand experience – Own business / consulting / research ∀ α Toolkit used by “First Explorers” – Animation of and co-creation with this community is required ∀ α Toolkit published (print-on-demand “Handbook”) • Core Devt. Team Creates β-Toolkit in light of experience with α • Crowd-funding – 200-500 Individuals and organizations • Crowd-funding collaborators use β-Toolkit – Experiences shared within collaboration community • Core Devt. Team Creates v1.0 Toolkit described in book • Book released • Evolve toolkit – Based on Core Devt.Core Devt. TeamTeam Gains 1Gains 1stst HandHand ExperienceExperience Core Devt. TeamCore Devt. Team Learn fromLearn from CollaboratorsCollaborators
  109. 109. 109 FBIToolkit Project Plan – up to and including launch of Co-op
  110. 110. 110 Toolkit Development Phases aka Phases of the Collaboration Project Self Study / Mutual Support + Workshops + eBook / PoD α 1 Core Devt. Team Content Leaders & Contributors Core Devt. Team + First Explorers TBD + α+Canvas published in short book Core Devt. Team Content Leaders via Webinar etc. β 2 Core Devt. Team Content Leaders & Contributors Crowd-Funding Collaborators TBD AU + Learning Map Delivered to Users via Pre-α Toolkit Version 0 Phase AU + SSBMGroup teams Co-Created By AU + First ExplorersUsers Thesis + Working DocsFormat …various >v1.0 4+ Co-op Members …and beyond + App etc. Self-Published Book v1.0 3 Core Devt. Team Content Leaders & Contributors Book Readers Core Devt. TeamCore Devt. Team has sufficienthas sufficient learning tolearning to developdevelop ββ-Toolkit?-Toolkit? Core Devt. Team hasCore Devt. Team has sufficient learning tosufficient learning to develop toolkit v1.0?develop toolkit v1.0? Phase Completed When Core Devt. TeamCore Devt. Team committed to proceedcommitted to proceed based on detailed plans –based on detailed plans – Feb 2014Feb 2014
  111. 111. 111 Toolkit Current State Assessment: Jan 2016 Conceptual Chapter Conceptual Content Assessment of Current Completeness Against Requirements for Minimal Viability Explanation for Core-Development Team & First Explorers (α-Toolkit) Explanation for Collaborators (β-Toolkit) Explanation for Target Audience via Book (Toolkit v1.0) 1. Introduction 75% 40% 20% 2. Visual Design Tool 90% (v2 canvas released) 50% 20% 3. Design Principles 30% 20% 10% 4. Methods 60% 40% 10% 5. Case Studies and Patterns 70%[1] 20% 10% – Companion Website 40%[2] 25%[3] 0% – Visual Design 50% 30% 0% – Story Design 75% 30% 15% [1] The α-Toolkit will include relatively little information concerning patterns and cases studies. The experience the Core Development Team gains using α-Toolkit the will provides the patterns and cases for the β-Toolkit. [2] Assume we clean-up the existing wiki and make everyone aware of the various sources of information on line included in the learning map - youTube, SlideShare, etc. [3] Assuming we leverage the existing wiki, bringing this content into the crowd-funded collaboration platform (see Crowd-Funding and Collaboration Platform Requirements document):
  112. 112. 112 Help bring Flourishing Business Innovation to the World!  Become a “First Explorer” – Enables commercial use of the new Canvas now 40 organizations & individuals around the globe have joined so far  Join the quest – Crowd-funded collaborative book project Working Title: Flourishing Business Innovation – 12 International co-authors identified – Crowd-funding in 2016-17 Individuals and Organizations Backers also get immediate commercial rights to use new Canvas Everyone else will have to wait for the book – Self Publish 2016-17 Canvas released under a Creative Commons License free for commercial use  Connect to like-minded colleagues – Linkedin and Facebook 540+ Members from around the globe @FlourishingBiz # FlourishingBiz
  113. 113. 113 Join 550+ colleagues: Monthly presentations – virtual & F2F @StronglySustain #SSBMG Learn More – ~3 minute Audio/Visual Overview • Focus Areas – • Videos – • Learning Map – – Includes case studies • Blogs – Strongly Sustainable Business Model Resources
  114. 114. 114 Copyright • All images used under applicable creative commons licences – see notes on each page © Antony Upward / Edward James Consulting Ltd., 2016. Some rights reserved. – Permissions available at /Permissions – This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution- NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 Unported License
  115. 115. 115

Editor's Notes

  • Inspired by
  • So why is flourishing the right and best goal?
    (or any of t he other words that mean the same thing
    - thriving
    - abundance
    - genuine wealth
    - authentic happiness
    - etc
  • Sustainability is about keeping things the same. Business is about change. No wonder business doesn’t get sustainability.
  • Panarchy is the context for our theory of change
    We’ve ignored Meso! Vital we fix this – not taking advantage of the feedback and feedforward loops – hence pace of change can’t accelerate!
    Question: which comes first -
    (1) personal (micro-level) psychological shift in values/beliefs towards wanting to personally "have the possibility for flourishing for myself and for everyone and everything for ever"
    (2) organizations/enterprise (meso level) who are viable today but explicitly trying to change the system in which they exist to make the whole system "sustain the possibility for flourishing", or
    (3) social/economic systems changes (macro level), via social norms, regulation, policy and law towards the whole society "sustaining the possibility for all to flourish forever"
    I think the answer to this question is:  "none of them come first; its the interaction of all three - together" - as per the panarchy model. 
    *BUT* historically as people who care about "sustaining the possibility for flourishing for all forever" we have spent a ton of time on (1) and (3) and comparatively little time time on (2).  IMHO this is a key reason why change has been so slow coming.  People (1) can't individually make change at the (3) level - they have to collaborate via organizations (2).  But without a focus on helping organizations create the change (2) not much can  change at levels (1) and (3).  And of course there a huge feedback loops amongst these levels - but again if we've historically been under playing one of these three levels we're not  taking advantage of all the possible reinforcing loops (and may be subjected to a bunch of balancing loops due to our collective inattention to the (2) level)
  • Image:
  • So if we’re talking about flourishing enterprise we need first to step back and set the scene: what do we mean by flourishing?
    John Ehrenfeld from MIT suggested about 15 years ago that humans collectively and individually need a new goal for conducting our lives – that we should all strive to sustain the possibility that we can all flourish along with all other life on this, our finite shared planet, forever
    As a little experiment - try this – with a friend tell each other 4 stories: a time when (1) you survived something, (2) when you languished in a situation,(3) when you felt a situation was sustainable, and (4) a time when you flourished. Then ask each other: which do you want more of going forward? (Not flourishing includes happiness – but happiness is just one part of the moment-to-moment experience of flourishing – of being and caring vs. having). This scale survival to flourishing is the range of human potential as defined by positive (and ecological?) psychologists.
    We like this definition for lots of reasons.
    Build 1
    I think you’ll agree that THAT’s a B.H.A.G. – a big hairy audacious goal!
    Build 2
    AND it’s also really inspiring and a good deal more attractive as a goal than merely being “sustainable” – after all, as Chris Laszlo from Case Western Reserve University in Cleveland, USA, has said recently: all who wants a sustainable marriage.
    Build 3
    AND flourishing is also a universal, practical / accessible idea. It’s something nearly all of us have experienced We’ve all had an experience of flourishing – being at the peek of our performance… being in a moment of flow where time flew by because we were so engaged, so excited, so at one with what we were doing…
    Two other interesting things about the idea of flourishing are that
    Build 4
    One: what each of us means when we use the word for ourselves is personal – which means its connected to what we individually value and how we understand the world. This isn’t some top down definition being imposed.
    Build 5
    And two: flourishing is a process – it is continuous change, its not a state – so it aligns with the business reality that business is about the process of changing forever – continuously adapting to changing circumstances to enable you to stay in business.
  • So how does the goal of sustaining the possibility for flourishing apply to human organizations, our enterprises, our businesses?
    <Build Slide>
    This is about
    win-win-win, creating positive outcomes
    to paraphrase B Lab: using the power of business to enable human and other life to flourish on this planet forever
    This is the future we see and the vision we’re seeking to create – its why we are doing this work with you here today.
    We’d like to invite you to explore this future with us for the remainder of this workshop…
    So with this vision for the future of business in mind…
    Image: <<replace image with one with license for commercial reuse –
  • We’d like to take a couple of minutes to summarize our understanding on this topic
    Our understanding is in two parts…
    First, based on the latest science, is that in order to have the possibility for flourishing there are some big picture requirements that need to be met
    We need personally, and in our businesses, to strive to create the following:
    Build 2-5
    >>Note for Build 2: aligns with the first 3 of The Natural Step System Conditions for a sustainable society
    >>Note for Build 3: aligns with the 4 (and the new 5-8) system conditions
    You’ll notice this is the same body of knowledge that informed the Dictionary of Flourishing Business (and hence the Flourishing Business Canvas) that we described earlier.
    So the questions the Canvas asks are directly and explicitly aligned with this understanding of the requirements we need to fulfill in order to create the possibility for flourishing for all forever.
    So what are the implications for individual enterprise… no longer just “sustainable” enterprises, but flourishing ones.
    How from our perspective (and our client for today Seema Pabari) should an enterprise define success if it wants to contribute to a society so that the possibility for flourishing exists?
  • So the 2nd part of our learning concerns the vision and mission for a business that wishes to contribute to creating the big picture –
    Recently, working with Dr. Bob Willard*, and others from the Natural Step around the world, we asked ourselves “what does the vision and mission for a business need to be to contribute to achieving the big picture” - creating the possibility for flourishing
    Together we’ve come up with the following definition:
    Build 1-5
    Note for Build 2: Value constellation is latest systems / complexity thinking of a business value chain, value network, or “ecosystem”. Another biologically inspired way of saying this would be “through out the biome of that enterprise – throughout its business biome.”
    * Founder of this project is Dr. Bob Willard, author of the popular book “The New Sustainability Advantage” (which documents the financial business case for sustainability), see:
  • Build 1 – next two builds appear after 1.5 second each
    A better business, by adopting the goal of creating the possibility for flourishing for itself and all its stakeholders, based on values held by all those stakeholders, means that business will be focused on doing good – environmentally, socially and economically – for all its stakeholders, and in doing so is more likely to be able to resiliently do well economically for itself.
    Build 2
    Better enterprises do well because:
    First they do a better job at managing risk.
    Using an example relevant to profit-first enterprises (left end of “bookshelf”), that a solely focuses on making money and who don’t recognize their true contexts, are increasingly very surprised when they are impacted by events that arise first in those broader contexts. Things like climate change, water shortages, income inequality, and other mega-forces now starting to impact firms world-wide (the mega-forces of change). Ultimately only focusing on doing well will have unintended consequences that will impact profits.
    Second better businesses do a better job of understanding and exploiting the opportunities that are arising because of these same mega forces. Better businesses have more sources for innovation.
    Finally, because they do a better job of managing risk and exploiting new opportunities, better businesses are also more resilient. They are more likely to survive and flourish for the long term.
    For Evidence of Better…
    For The Story of Why I Need a Flourishing Business Model See:
    See also:
    Report by Deloitte Consulting: Sustainability Driven Innovation
    1. Sustainability leaders are much more likely than average to be innovation leaders.
    2. The evidence points to the relationship being causal, not just correlation.
    3. Sustainability's ability to spark innovation can be harnessed, and it can be incorporated into organizations' innovation processes.
    Report by Booze: "For Companies, It’s Not Easy Being Green" which stated "Leading companies that have implemented sustainable initiatives along their supply chains have seen a corresponding boost in their financial performance. But there’s no reward for a halfhearted implementation—companies that instituted only one aspect of a corporate responsibility program lost more money than they gained.“
    <<Images - Copyright>>
  • I’m sure you’re thinking buy now – this all sounds great – but how can a business meet these requirements?
    How can these big requirements to enable flourishing business get translated into real operating businesses?
    What about some practical help to make it easier to meet these requirement so business can flourish and create that possibility for everyone else.
  • But why this obsession with business models?
    There are many things to think about around an enterprise – whether your starting a new one or striving to improve an existing one. We’re not saying the business model isn’t some magic thing that means you don’t think about any thing else for your business.
    Quite the opposite
    But the business model IS a central repository for a view on everything about your enterprise – which because of its shared language and simple structure makes it perfect to use to explain the whole in the stories you need to tell to everyone involved in your enterprise – all the stakeholders – this is what makes it so powerful.
    How does your enterprise relate to all its contexts; what knowledge - from science, of the market (customers / competitors), of society (“rights”, treaties, law, regulation, social norm, relationships), of all your stakeholders (existing and potential – drawn from your ecosystem actors) – do you need to understand this context, spot and assessment risks and find opportunities?
    What is your product or service design?
    What is your operational plan – detailed organizational design, business process model (plan-do-check-act), information systems (information capture, storage, processing, dissemination/reporting), budgets (mapped to “capitals”: human, knowledge, relationship, material / logistic, financial)
    What is your transformational plan – to implement and begin executing your new business model according to your operational plan?
    What assumptions have each of you made, and are making together (management, employees, and with all other stakeholders)? What mental models do you each have, are these shared, if so who shares them? (Be explicit)
    What elements of your past experience enable your future? (Experience, Capabilities, Assets – all types of capital, Self-knowledge – personally, professionally, organizationally, socially) What is the future you’d like to see, that you expect to see? (Foresight)
    What is the mission, vision and values of the enterprise – informed by the world-view/beliefs, values and needs those stakeholders with the governance rights to set them?
    And last, but not least: What is your strategy (squiggly line) to realize your vision (X) while undertaking the mission in accordance with your values given what you can see through all the other lenses?
    And of course when you put things together in a whole you see things you don’t see when you look at your business from other (more traditional) lenses.
    This provides a powerful single and double loop learning opportunity that enables you more quickly see implications, risks and opportunities from different angles.
    Many elements of your business model lens will:
    Shape the detail you see through these other lenses
    Be shaped by the detail you see through these other lenses
    All the lenses are useful / important – they
    Are all useful / important to your compelling vision
    Must be developed iteratively due to the inter-dependencies between each of them, and between them and your overall business model
    It is this ability to integrate elements from all the different lenses you have always looked at your business through that enables your business model to be a powerful accelerator for teams to achieve a much more rigorous level in your thinking – enabling you to move faster with more confidence, with lower levels of risk and high likelihood of spotting innovative opportunities.
    Image: Blueprint - Public Domain -
    Image: Metamorphosis (modified) - <<Confirm Copyright>> -
    Image: Other – Microsoft PowerPoint Clip Art
  • Our theory of change visually
  • 1. The previous best practice answers to how you design a business and what a business design should contain, can be summarized as follows
    You have an idea which you write up in a business plan
    You convince people to give you money
    You work hard
    And Cross your fingers.
    2: And although this approach is still very widely used, despite that fact, as the OCED report suggests, that it doesn’t reliably produce profitable businesses!
    Clearly, compared to other fields of design, like designing cars where we’re now pretty good at producing reliable cars, this approach for designing business has some problems!
    3: Indeed some people have likened this approach to designing businesses to deliberately burning piles of money.
    Of course some business failures are because those businesses are not fit for purpose.
    But I think we’d all acknowledge there are significant financial, social, personal and environmental costs when firms go out of business. It is clearly not a good thing when a business fails – whether you’re an employee, a customer, a supplier, an investor, or a member of a community where a business is located or does business.
    Can’t we more reliably design successful businesses?
    "In entrepreneurship [unlike, say, in car design] we still rely on real-life crash tests which leads to costly failures”
    Compare how we design cars with how we design businesses today; today in business its like we do a rough sketch of a car (the business plan), get someone to put up the cash, then we spend the cash to build the car, and then wonder why most of the time the wheels fall off the first time we drive it! (and until recently this approach was considered a best practice!)
    Osterwalder, A. (2011). The new business models: designing and testing great businesses. Lift 11, Geneva, Switzerland. 1-87. slide 19 [minute 3.00-3.30] ( and
    I think as business people and members of societies that largely depends on our ability to reliably create wealth I find this previous ‘best practice’
    A) Humbling
    B) Rather worrying
  • With this question in mind, over 10 years ago Alex Osterwalder and Prof. Yve’s Pignuer set-out to improve things.... Using the process of design to more efficiently, effectively and reliably create businesses that would be profitable.
    1. The result of their work was the business model canvas: a paper based visual design tool to more reliably design profit-first businesses. (There is a 2 x 1.5m version available via a creative commons licenses for free commercial use at; this has been downloaded over 5 million times as of Jan 2015)
    2. This tool has solid theoretical underpinnings, that Osterwalder described in his 2004 PhD.
    3. And it is described in a highly accessible way in their now very popular book, Business Model Generation. As of Jan 2015 it’s sold over 1 million copies in 26 languages and has been in the top 10 Amazon business books since its 2009 launch.
    4. And most recently it has been complemented by an iPad / web app that enhances the usability of the canvas
    Now before we ask for the money for business we know that if we answer the 9 questions the business model canvas asks us, the likelihood is our pile of cash will actually create a profitable business, and not go up in smoke. (And in turn this increases the efficiency of the designer!)
    Clearly this a big step forward over the previous best practice!
    Osterwalder, A., & Smith, A. (2012). Strategyzer: Your Business Model Toolbox on Strategyzer . Switzerland: Business Model Foundry GmbH.
    Smith, A., Osterwalder, A., Business Model Foundry GmbH, & Hortis - Le Studio. (2011). Business Model ToolBox. Apple AppStore / Switzerland: Business Model Foundry GmbH.
    Osterwalder, A. (2010, 2011). Business Model Canvas. Switzerland: Business Model Foundry GmbH.
    Osterwalder, A. (2004). The Business Model Ontology: A Proposition in a Design Science Approach. (Ph.D., l’Ecole des Hautes Etudes Commerciales de l’Université de Lausanne). , 1-172. ‘
  • So in this rapidly emerging better practice the approach is to design, adapt or redesign a business – where the artefact being designed is the enterprise’s business model
    Design is seen as a better approach to creating successful business models in this increasingly volatile, uncertain, complex and ambiguous world compared to earlier analytic techniques based on forecasting (e.g. business planning)
    Today many people agree that design is just a better approach for creating successful businesses – and think it’s the business model that should be the focus of this design work.
    So in this emerging better practice the idea is to design your business model so it embeds all the elements needed to create the possibility for financial viability – which in the case of profit first enterprises means job one is maximizing short-term financial profitability and job two is any and all other concerns.
  • And the good news are there is a fantastic proven tool out there to help you collaborate to describe, discuss, improve and redesign the profit making aspects of your business model…
    Stats from Report by Strategyzer – “The business model canvas – why and how organizations around the world adopt it – a Field Report”
    Image derived from: / Khoon Lay Gan - / 123RF Stock Photo
  • So this is the profit-oriented Business Model Canvas – 9 questions that if you answer them well will increase the likelihood of a profitable business model.
    Who has seen this before?
    You can use this to look at a part of your business model - for a division, or just a single product or service line.
    Or you can use it to comprehensively look at you whole business – depending on how deep you want to go.
    What those millions of business people around the world who bought the book and downloaded this tool are finding is that it has a huge range of benefits – all adding to the likelihood that more profitable business models can be designed.
    There is a 2 x 1.5m version available via a creative commons licenses for free commercial use at
  • But, as I now refer to it, the profit first business model canvas only focuses on the questions that drive the monetary profitability of a businesses.
    It ignores almost all the other things that the design briefs for better business tell us are important.
    In other words the current best practice business design tools and method ignore the unintended consequences; they consider them as so called ‘externalities’.
    Put another way, the existing tools and best practices for creating businesses don’t ask the the questions that need to be answered if you want to create better businesses with fewer unintended consequences, or if you want your business to create the conditions for human and other life to flourish.
    This means it’s hard to create a better business with these existing tools
    So how can we efficiently and reliably design better businesses?
  • Our approach is also to design, adapt or redesign a business – where the artefact being designed is the enterprise’s business model.
    But we extend this approach so that as we design our business model we understand how the business model relates to the full context for the enterprise – not just financial/economic, but social and environmental as well.
    This means we now have the possibility to design your business model so it embeds all the elements needed to create the possibility for flourishing
  • If we’re going to work on a business model, but we all have different ideas of what a business model consists of, to have a useful conversation, we’re going to need a common language which is focused on the future requirements that need to be met for businesses to create the possibility for flourishing.
    We need a shared understanding of a set of concepts for all the parts of a business model that we need to consider so we can work together to design a flourishing business model.
    Without a common language how can you describe, design, discuss, collaborate and tell stories about your business model?
  • So how did we choose which elements to put on the Flourishing Business Canvas canvas and to include in the Future Fit Business Benchmark?
    How did we decide what words to put in the dictionary of Flourishing Business Models?
    Build 1
    It was based on our inter- and trans- disciplinary research and our team’s combined ~150+ years of practical experience designing businesses (we’re practicing “business architects”).
    We set an objective in our research to explicitly ensure that the elements of a business model we identified were completely aligned, completely compatible (to use the word in it academic sense), with what all the scientifically credentialed knowledge has to say across all the disciplines! Setting such a goal – to worry about physics, chemistry and biology when thinking about human created ideas like organizations and business – is, perhaps surprisingly, very uncommon in the social sciences! Most people doing research in business, management, organization and leadership never worry about what a natural scientist would say!
    We see this typical separation (for which there is a 500+ year tradition since the start of the reformation and later the enlightenment and that has led to huge benefits for humanity) as at the root cause of our biggest challenges today – the “mega forces of sustainability” – from climate-change to income inequality, from water shortages to urbanization. These are the challenges that, for example, the recently approved 17 UN Sustainable Development Goals seek to resolve. And at the heart of their resolution is a reintegration of our silo’d disciplinary based system of understanding the world.
    In our work on business models – we explicitly seek this reintegrated, or just integrated – view, ultimately to help all human enterprises contribute to the resolution of these challenges.
    So which disciplines knowledge must be integrated….
    Build 2-5
    But that’s a lot of knowledge!
    How did we choose which parts of the science to read?
    Build 6
    Based on all the practical and scientific advice we read we chose to include in our dictionary all the words that are needed to describe business models that “sustain the possibility to flourish…” – we thought this was a wonderful way of concisely and inspiration summary of the opportunity and challenge that, as we enter the anthropocene, humanity has the opportunity to grasp! And, very conveniently, it turns out this goal requires us to include in the language the words required to describe the economic profit making elements of an enterprise, all the social benefit making elements and all the elements needed to describe environmental regeneration – i.e. all the elements of a truly sustainable business model that you just explored using the cards!
    So in summary our research in the literature and our practical practice informed us on what the important elements of a business model are.
    So that’s great we went deep – but not really useful – how do we make this knowledge useful to practical to people like you to help you create better more innovative and sustainable business models?
    This is where the idea of a collaborative visual template – a canvas – comes in. This is what enables us to bring all this knowledge to you in a way that you can easily use the elements of this common language together with others to explore existing business models (as we did with the Tiffinday case study), to improve the business models of existing businesses, or to design new ones (for a new product in an existing company or a completely new enterprise – for profit or not-for-profit.
    Image: – Creative Commons
  • 1. And so recognizing this problem with the existing tools in 2010 I went back to university full time to do an interdisciplinary masters degree to create a better tool to help people design better, strongly sustainable businesses.
    I chose the highly customizable program in Environmental Studies and Business jointly offered by York University’s Schulich School of Business and Faculty of Environmental Studies.
    During my quest I met a lot of wonderful people all of whom wanted business to be a force for positive change.
    2. One day in January 2012 I met the folks from the Ontario College of Art and Design University’s Strategic Innovation Lab (the sLab).
    Some of them had helped Alex develop the most popular profit-first business model design tool, the Business Model Canvas and help to fund his very popular book: Business Model Generation.
    The people in the sLab were inspired by the progress I was already starting to make towards a better tool to create better businesses.
    Because of that, they decided to join me in my quest! Now I wasn’t on my quest alone (its so much better being part of a group!)
    3. So in early 2012 we created the Strongly Sustainable Business Model Group.
    We decided the group should focus on creating a toolkit to help new and existing small and medium business move to better more sustainable business models. And we decided my new tool would be at the centre of this toolkit.
    And for the rest of 2012 and continuing into 2013 a number of that group, including many of you, worked on various parts of the toolkit.
    4. Then in 2013, through the workshops in May we, the Core Development Team, came together.
    5. Finally, few months back, after nearly 3 years of work, and with a lot of help from a lot of people, our now shared quest reached a major milestone: I successfully defended my thesis and graduated.
    (If you’re *REALLY* keen you can download my thesis at the URL shown. Its licensed under a creative commons license – but until we publish the book – we’ve put a commercial restriction on it. However, as you’ll see shortly, we have an easy path so you can use the Strongly Sustainable Business Model Canvas now)
    Upward, A. (2013). Towards an Ontology and Canvas for Strongly Sustainable Business Models: A Systemic Design Science Exploration. (Masters of Environmental Studies / Graduate Diploma in Business + Environment, York University, Faculty of Environmental Studies and Schulich School of Business). , 1-1116 (i-xxii). (
  • Our canvas is the result of 3 years of graduate research at York University’s Faculty of Environmental Studies and Schulich School of Business, plus more than a years subsequent development by the global members of the Strongly Sustainable Business Model Group hosted by the OCAD University Strategic Innovation Lab.
    We choose to build our tool on a proven model - the million selling Business Model Canvas that asks the 9 necessary and sufficient questions to describe a profitable business model. This tool is now used by businesses, entrepreneurs and educators world-wide. The Business Model Canvas provides a common language for people to use to describe and design the profit seeking aspects of a business.
    Our tool takes this proven approach to designing for financial profitability and adds the elements needed to design for flourishing businesses – business that meet the big picture requirements we introduced a moment ago.
  • So where are we at this point? Let’s review…
    So what did my confidential expert respondents have to say about the research overall, the strongly sustainable business model canvas, and the underlying technical ontology which, like Osterwalder, powers the practitioner visual design tool – the canvas?
    Image credit: / William Perugini / 123RF Stock Photo
  • But I also got lots of ideas for improvements from the feedback that both my formal and informal respondents made – things like:
    A method for the effective and efficient use of the canvas
    Design principles to follow to help create good answers to the 14 questions the canvas poses
    A Better way of summarizing / introduce the canvas
    More case studies of its use
    Image credit: / William Perugini / 123RF Stock Photo
  • More recently got feedback and advice from Core Development Team members, particularly the Management Team, but also some outside advisors.
  • Inspired by
  • When I considered my answer to these questions I realised that in our culture the proto-typical idea of an entrepreneur is that of a hero.
    A solitary individual, who (perhaps with a few others) by hard work (and a bit of luck) brings a new idea to market.
    But we all know, if this was ever true, for sustainable businesses it can never be true.
    For business to be sustainable all stakeholders need to be involved in its conception, design and operations - not just the few with the idea, money, power, or resources.
  • Yes I'm an entrepreneur and a social innovator: I think most of us here are; but I am not a hero.
    I am your convener, your servant.
    The creator of the space and place in which together I hope we will choose to create the toolkit that will help to change the operating logic of business - forever!
    I believe that it is together that we are going to conceive, design, test, realise and successfully bring to market a toolkit to create the future of business.
  • Example
    So a key part of any business model is the value proposition for the collaborators / backers (funders).
    Since you’re all potential funders / collaborators / backers I’ve chosen just to focus on those elements of the value proposition relevant to funders / collaborators.
    (other value propositions concern the core writing team, people who buy the book once its published, etc.)
    You’re going to get a chance to work on all the other value propositions…
  • Pollination creates life and flourishing vs virus tends to kill or at best harm its immediate host!
    By having you all involved we hope to come up with better answers than if a much smaller group had been involved
    the starting point for the community which we hope will be the key ingredient in making this project a huge success
    Image from:
  • But let's be realistic and humble about this endeavour. This whole program is an experiment.
    An exciting one for sure - but a fragile experiment never the less.
    It is an experiment to see if we can create a sustainable business around a toolkit that helps people world-wide create sustainable businesses!
    So that means we must be the first to try out these tools; if we're going to sell dog food, we must want to and actually eat our own dog-food!
    And these workshops are but a first example; having all of you help design the business model for this business; here were are trying, for the first time, to execute our early thinking the method to create a strongly sustainable business.
    Call this a trial of strongly sustainable business design method v0.1
    Like this bubble, another part of sustainability, is to be transparent as possible
    For example my research and the project wiki is currently in the public domain with a creative commons license (albeit with a commercial restriction which I hope we will lift when the toolkit is released)
    Right now I am assuming that when we launch the crowd-funding process in early June, the project budget, at the line item level, will be visible to potential backers.
    So in this project we're going to be learning by doing; we are conducting an experiment for the new way of starting businesses… a more sustainable way!
    But this means there is going to be ambiguity, we are going to make mistakes, but we are going to learn from them, and learn quickly.
    Then we are going to ensure we convey our learnings to the users of the toolkit we are creating.
    And we're also going to allow and enable academics to report on our experiment and experience to help develop a theory of strongly sustainable business and change – to help create future improvements to the toolkit.
    Image: Used under creative-commons license:
    Background -
    Needle - Credit Required in the form: "Photography by User: MrX"
  • Since we’re designers we need to think about what principles we need to apply as we create this business.
    (again these are version 0.1 for part of the content of the book – the business design principles)
    Be the Change – Enjoy = Having Fun
    Bob Willard Maturity Model Level 5 – purpose / passion driven, p.21, Willard, B. (2012). In Willard B. (Ed.), The new sustainability advantage: seven business case benefits of a triple bottom line (Completely rev. 10th anniversary ed.). Gabriola Island, British Columbia, Canada: New Society Publishers
    Relevant to existing and start-up businesses -> irrespective of where they are on their journey thinking and acting to improve their sustainability. This is for regular business people *AND* the people who are on the leading edge.
    Another reason for focusing on SMB’s is that there is a lot of them and they have a much bigger impact on things like job creation than large businesses.
    Adhere to LOIS NOT TINA ( and this blog post:
    Local but open platform
    Adaptive to local conditions and realities
    Enable Research to Enable Continuous Improvement
    Our knowledge of sustainability and organizations, while better than its ever been, is far from complete.
    If we don’t humbly recognize that gap and help improve the available knowledge we are sowing the seeds for our failure – since we won’t have solid a basis for improvement
    Lots of research methods and instrumentations are possible
    (Participative) Action Research
    Design Science
    Descriptive Science
    Build a Community
    Reasonable financial rewards across all the players in the eco-system
    Ensure we use to the maximum possible B Corps and locally oriented business for *everything*
    Lidwell, W., Holden, K., Butler, J., & Elam, K.,. (2010). Universal principles of design : 125 ways to enhance usability, influence perception, increase appeal, make better design decisions, and teach through design. Beverly, Mass.: Rockport Publishers.
  • These are the members of the Strongly Sustainable Business Model Group who chose to become the Core Development Team for the Strongly Sustainable Business Model Innovation Toolkit project and to become founding members of the Strongly Sustainable Business Model Innovation Co-op. These people all learned about the project via their attendance at an open series of workshops held May-Sept 2013 and then all came to Toronto in Feb 2014 for additional workshops and planning meetings
  • We believe SMEs, with their small management teams have the most ability to change the most and fastest
    We have a dream that together all of us here will contribute to that future, a future where all life on this planet can flourish.
    We believe we can do this by providing better tools to everyone who is attempting to change business away from simple wealth maximization towards creating the conditions for flourishing. But it doesn’t matter where people are when they come to us looking for better tools to create better businesses – all we care is that they want to change, not why and not where they currently are on their journey.
    We just want to supply everyone who needs them better tools to help them be more effective, more efficient, and more reliable at creating the change they want, the change we need, the change we want - to create a world where people and other life flourish.
    We will let others work on convince those who have yet to decide they need to change. We are not evangelists.
    More details from Green Suit pitch Covering Email
    Understanding Our Potential Partners - The Green Suits
    After much discussion Harvey and I believe (i.e. its a hypothesis we're testing via bringing this pitch to the world) that one of the key differences between Blue and Green Suits is that:
    Green Suits intuitively and/or explicitly understand that to successfully enable flourishing via their business they must simultaneously and reflexively develop their business (business model, its operation and continuous improvement) and their inner life (ability to empathize, love, contemplate, reflect, etc.)
    Blue Suits (unlike black suits) do accept they must work on developing environmental, social and economic aspects of their business model, its operation and continuous improvement in order to ensure they remain monetarily profitable (which remains their key objective) but they do not yet realize that their success will be limited if they do not also work in the development of their inner life.
    Put more bluntly... Green Suits recognize the value of "inner world" personal development in achieving, in the "outer world", their goals and vision of a flourishing world for humans and all other life forever;  Blue Suits reject such inner development work as not important to achieving success in what they see as the "hard" "competitive" "impersonal" world of business whose primary purpose making money.
    As I've been arguing in public, this means Green Suits can be more successful than blue suits - systematically avoiding more risks and capitalizing on more opportunities that Blue Suits - while creating outcomes that enable environmentally, socially, economically and personal flourishing.  And we are starting to have evidence of this: the performance of members of BALLE and Certified Benefit Corporations during the on-going economic restructuring has generally out performed, profit-first business. 
    This is aligned with our own vision for our own business that will bring the Toolkit to the world:  the Green Suit approach is ultimately and simply the better way of doing business.
    Aside: I am being deliberately "black and white" here!   There are clearly "shades" of suits between blue and green.  For example in the middle we might say there are teal, cyan or terquoise suits (i.e. between Blue and Green).  These are people who are still primarily focused on making money but recognize, for example, that to lead such organizations require considerable personal development.    However, Harvey and I maintain that since these organizations still only legitimate making money as the primary objective, true alignment of peoples deeply held human values and their day to day work / decision making is impossible.   Hence true flourishing of the stakeholders of those businesses is also impossible.
  • Let’s take a moment to imagine what this might be like…
    Imagine a new operating logic for business which integrates the achievement of environmental, social and economic benefits
    2. Now imagine creating a toolkit to help people create these businesses
    Now, what if that toolkit
    Used the latest natural and social science of sustainability – so it was as good as our best current knowledge allowed
    Contained an attractive visual design tool,
    A set of strongly sustainable business design principles
    Steps for its effective use
    And example case studies
    Imagine how such a toolkit would help you bring into the world your strongly sustainable business idea!
    How could it help you improve the sustainability of your business ?
  • To be successful at providing better tools to create better businesses to those who have already decided they have to change let’s be clear on the challenge in front of us. What is it this toolkit has to do in its first version – the book we will produce.
    1. First the book has to emotionally engage with our readers. We don’t care what emotions we inspire in our readers
    2. What we care about is that having read the book they believe the change they want to make is possible, and then act differently to bring about the change.
    3. We want them to act to use the toolkit to undertake the design of a better business model for their business and then implement that new business model
    4. And this we believe will help bring about more better, strongly sustainable, businesses.
  • This is not a small group of people!
    And more
    … All sustainability consultants
    … All sustainability professionals in the increasing number of companies seeking to improve their sustainability
    … All Credit Unions
    … All Co-ops
    … All the members of all these organizations
    And this is “just” our potential “friendly” market – the many many other groups are pursing projects and initiatives that are helping to bring about a new operating logic of business to enable flourishing.
    So this project sets out to make a key contribution to an already large community of leaders in business sustainability… because so far no one has proposed a toolkit which can help all these groups to apply these new ideas, and to enable them to do so efficiently and effectively!
    But, that’s not all, we want to write this in such a way any business person would want to engage with the toolkit…
    Imagine how much larger our market gets when you realise, as Bob Willard has been highlighting for years, that more sustainabile businesses are simply *BETTER* businesses – even if your goal remains predominately to make money…
    Now our market becomes…
    … All entrpreneurs, innovators, investors
    … All venture capitalists
    … All consultants
    … All business owners
    … All business educators
    … All business Incubators (OCADU, MaRSDD, RyersonDMZ, etc.)
  • Other products and services to sustain the on-going development and deployment of the Toolkit at scale are envisaged to follow the initial book
    For more details of the Gold Standard Work see:
  • As a working title we’re calling the crowd-funded collaborative book we’re planning to write and publish in 2016: “Flourishing Business Model Innovation”
    This slide gives an outline or conceptual table of contents:
    section 2 describing the flourishing business model canvas,
    section 3 describing how to answer the 16 questions the canvas asks well, so you will score highly, for example, on the B Lab Benefit Impact Assessment Survey, align with the BALLE localist principles or the Framework For Strategic Sustainable Development Sustainability Principles (3 environmental and *NEW* 5 social), plus Transition Towns, Institute for Local Self-Reliance, etc. and the emerging “Gold Standard”
    section 4 describes how to use the canvas to create a strongly sustainable business model
    section 5 provides more case studies…
    This may need to be revised in light of our decision on the most effective way to tell our story to enable our audience to emotionally connect with the toolkit.
  • From Book Proposal
  • Our objective in all of this is to create a tool that provides a common language to enable you to collaboratively sketch, prototype, design, improve, communicate, understand, measure, diagnose and tell stories about your flourishing business model.
  • Our canvas is the result of 3 years of graduate research at York University’s Faculty of Environmental Studies and Schulich School of Business, plus more than a years subsequent development by a project team of 12 – all members of the Strongly Sustainable Business Model Group hosted by the OCAD University Strategic Innovation Lab.
    We choose to build our tool on one that has been proven useful in practice by millions of people around the world – the business model canvas.
    But our research told us that minor tweaks to this practical tool were going to make it compatible with all the research!
    So we went back to the original PhD research that lead to the BMC – Alex Osterwalder’s Business Model Ontology – and, then adding to it all the knowledge mentioned earlier, developed a Strongly Sustainable Business Model Ontology – which was recently published in the first special issue on Business Models for Sustainability, Entrepreneurship, Innovation & Transformation of the well respected peer reviewed Journal of Organization & Environment.
    Like Alex Osterwalder, it was from this technical ontology that we developed the practical Flourishing Business Model Canvas we’re sharing with you today.
    Our tool takes this proven approach to designing for financial profitability and adds the elements needed to design for flourishing businesses – business that meet the big picture requirements we introduced earlier.
  • Slide adapted with permission from / Dr. Bob Willard – Presentation to Strongly Sustainable Business Model Group
    Slides are licensed by Future Fit Foundation or Sustainability Advantage CC – BY (i.e. commercial remixing ok)
  • Flourishing Business Toolkit logo © Antony Upward / Edward James Consulting 2014
    Refocus on Future Fitness logo © Harbourfront Centre 2014
  • Roughly in the order we heard about them.
    More here: (list rather out of date)
    More here:
  • Summary
    Declaration of Purpose
    Our Beliefs and Commitments
    Our Vision, Mission, Strategy, Values
    Our Theory of Change
    Learning & Development Program
    Our Definition of Acceptable Success
    Two Business Models
    1a. Project, 1b. On-Going
    Book Proposal
    2a. Project Task Plan; 2b. Project Financial Plan
    Core Development Team Roles and Responsibilities
    Detail Plans
    4a. Collaboration Plan
    4b. Crowd-Funding Marketing
    4c. Crowd-Funding & Collaboration Platform Requirements
    4d. Partnerships & Legal Entity Design
  • From Business Proposal
  • From Business Proposal
  • From Business Proposal
    Strategy Detail
    To complete our mission the strategy of our business is to: Develop, deliver and continuously improve, based on the ever improving science of flourishing, the Strongly Sustainable Business Model Toolkit, along with complementary products and services.
    Collaborate with all others who share our vision, and who are using the same or additional levers to achieve the system change we all desire.
  • From Book Proposal
  • From Collaboration Detailed Plan
  • From Collaboration Detailed Plan
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