Putting Purpose into Practice

At our last conference in October 2014 leaders from business and society discussed questions about the purpose of business. 

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Previous Conferences

The theme of our conference held on 24 October 2013 was ‘Business Success Through Serving Society’. As well as key note speeches from John Kay and Justin Welby, panels made up of senior business leaders and representatives from wider society debated the role of boards and management in making change, whether investors are incentivised to serve society and whether wider society can promote positive change. The conference was chaired by Jon Snow of Channel 4 News.

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A half-day conference was held in central London on Tuesday 18 September to launch the initiative ‘A Blueprint for Better Business?’.

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A key activity is Engaging with Business and
promoting the adoption of the Blueprint Principles
and Framework. We work through a variety of channels to access all business from large multinationals to small U.K. businesses.

Engaging with Large Corporates

Engaging with Large Corporates

A large part of our work is talking to people in individual businesses to discuss how they can use our Principles and Framework. This work generally takes the form of one to one meetings. In addition, some people in business have generously agreed to host forums for CEOs and Chairmen at which we have been able to introduce and discuss the Blueprint Principles.

We believe business must lead the change, but it cannot do this alone; wider society has a critical role to play in facilitating change.

We work to facilitate dialogue between business and wider society to include investors, NGOs, faith leaders, students and future leaders .

We ask that wider society help, support, critique, and advise business on its journey.

Immersion Courses

Immersion Courses

To help embed the Blueprint Principles and Framework within organisations, we run a series of residential workshops aimed at individuals within companies who are:

  • charged with responsibility for implementing Blueprint for those organisations who have committed to aligning to the Blueprint Principles; or
  • tasked with considering whether to align to the Blueprint Principles

The objectives of the course are to provide participants with:

  • a deeper understanding of the Blueprint Principles, Framework and underlying Provenance, and how these fit together
  • insights into how to uncover the Purpose of an organisation which serves society and respects the dignity of people
  • an introduction to the challenges of implementing the Blueprint Principles in practice
  • the opportunity to contribute to the development of the Blueprint movement

The workshops also offer participants the opportunity to be part of a network of like-minded leaders who are contributing to this important but challenging journey for whom a network of support will be important in sustaining success.

Coaches and Consultants Network

Coaches and Consultants Network

  • We are also building an active network of coaches and consultants who have affinity with our Principles and who want to use them in their work with their clients. We will be holding a separate series of workshops for these coaches and consultants to help them gain a deeper understanding of the Blueprint Principles and Framework.These coaches and consultants will not be accredited to work with the Blueprint Principles but are free to use them,  subject to the protocols attached.  We will also create an online forum where learnings from using them in practice can be shared.

Engaging with SME's

Engaging with SME’s

We believe that every business should have a purpose which serves society and respects the dignity of people.  Small and medium sized enterprises (SMEs) face issues and challenges that are distinct from those faced by large corporates. SME leaders and entrepreneurs often feel isolated, with a high level of personal responsibility and awareness of the direct consequences of their decisions. This leads to concerns about fair decision making, ethics and values.

We have developed a series of workshops aimed at small and medium sized businesses, using the Five Principles of a Purpose Driven Business.

Our approach:

  • To connect values and business
  • Explore the challenges and issues of ‘fair’ decision making with like-minded entrepreneurs
  • Share experience in an environment of trust and mutual support
  • Take into account SME-specific issues and challenges

Dialogue with Investors

Dialogue with Investors

Many people feel that the dialogue between investors and companies focuses unhealthily on short-term returns. We have therefore established a forum to engage with the investor community to explore how the Blueprint Principles can be used to broaden and deepen investor conversation.

This group have looked at whether it is possible to develop a methodology using publically available information to help companies and investors assess progress in aligning to the Blueprint for Better Business Principles.

In coming months we will be engaging with a wider group of investors and companies to explore how in practice the Blueprint Principles can best be used.


We work with both business and wider society to harness the power of business to create a better society for all.  We believe business must lead the change, but it cannot do this alone; wider society has a critical role to play. Part of work is therefore to facilitate dialogue between business NGO’s, wider society and all faiths and none.


NGO’s and wider society 

We are already engaging with a group of key UK NGOs to get their input on our work and to discuss how NGOs and business can work together in serving wider society.

We held an initial meeting in March 2014 to which we invited key UK NGOs.  Attendees included representatives from Human Rights Watch, Fair Trade Foundation,  Amnesty, Oxfam, Which?, Christian Aid, Cafod, Save the Children, Tearfund and WWF.

We aim to hold 1-2 meetings a year to continue the dialogue and to work with NGOs to develop other means of connecting NGOs with business to help in the implementation of our Principles.

We are also growing links with other civil society organisations including trade unions.

Interfaith Dialogue

Interfaith Dialogue

Blueprint is not a faith led initiative but it is faith enabled.  Much of the thinking (the provenance) which underpins the Blueprint Framework and Principles is drawn from faith teachings, in particular Catholic Social Thought.

One concept that resonates in particular with business people of faith is that of a “divided life“ – leaving the best of the personal values and morals formed outside the workplace at the door when at work. One of the objectives of the Blueprint initiative is to enable people to take their personal values to work with them….Uniting Corporate Purpose and Personal Values to Serve Society.

We believe the values in our Framework are common across many faiths. We formed our Interfaith group to test this and found support for them within their scriptures and texts. Our group currently includes representation from the Anglican, Jewish, Sikh, Muslim, Hindu and Buddhist communities.

The group meets 3-4 times a year to discuss the application of faith values to business. We also brought business leaders of faith together to discuss the application of our Framework and Principles to business in practice.