About me – intro to Penguin, why we talk about Creative Responsibility
When I think about traditional corporate responsibility or CSR or sustainability or whatever term we’re using these days, frankly it makes me want to claw my own eyes out.
Of course there is a space for some of this stuff – getting teams together to volunteer is important. Raising money for charity is important. Getting your recycling bins in order is important.
But how much is any of this really moving the dial? I think we’ve reached a point where this feels quite tokenistic and very much like a nice to have, add-on to a company’s core business. Rather than being fundamental.
When we think about corporate responsibility in the context of our rapidly changing world, there are some fundamental shifts which will affect its future.
The rise of the ”corpsumer”
Reference Patagonia New Ipsos mori survey found 1/3 of Britons had changed the way they shopped in favour of more ethical and sustainable products
Puffin World of Stories
SIENA Employer more trusted than Government, NGOs or Media – Edelman
This is Penguin’s founder, Allen Lane. He ripped up the publishing rule book when he founded our company 85 years ago – spotting an opportunity to make literature available to eh masses by inventing the paperback, so that
He talked about Penguin needing to be both missionary and mercenary – that its dual role was both to be profitable and successful, but also play a role in society by democratizing literature, And making books available to everyone.
Some of you may be familiar with the B-Corps movement, which is gathering momentum rapidly. It originated in the states, and is rooted in this idea that business can be both purpose-led and profit-led. That the two go hand in hand, and are mutually complementary.
To become a B Corps you have to do two things.
I always think it’s helpful to look outside at other brands in different industries who are doing this well, this balance of commerciality and purpose.
Mattel, who own Barbie, is a fascinating example of how
Frankly thank god. If I think about my own career, which I’ve built in this field, I think it’s only a good thing the responsible business is becoming more and more fundamental to the core of business.
The challenge of staying true to who you are and of doing this in a way which is authentic – and not just being reactionary
Especially challenging when pressure is coming from all sides and in real time, with social media as the added incubator of this pressure
Announcement of climate negativity pledge from Microsoft Net zero is now almost an expectation
Pepsi example Also Rynair advert banned by ASA after claiming to be the ‘greenest airline’