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Blueprint was pleased to be invited to present a paper at the Common Good Conference, June 21-23, 2018 at the University of St. Thomas Minneapolis. In this paper Charles Wookey, Helen Alford and Loughlin Hickey share the origins of A Blueprint for Better Business, the ongoing work towards advancing the common good through purpose-led business and early learnings from our work with some major companies.

Blueprint has a theory of change that is based on creating the conditions for thoughtful leaders to move to a more human centric view of business. This theory of change envisages changing the dominant narrative within the eco-system surrounding leaders. The dominant discourse should become: profit is not the purpose of a company; profit is one outcome of identifying and pursuing a purpose that benefits society

In 2012 a group of business leaders approached the Cardinal Archbishop of Westminster, concerned by the widespread breakdown of trust between business – especially big business – and society, they saw the need for an initiative that came from society rather than business, which was non-regulatory in approach, and which could help re-set the relationship. This was followed by an extensive dialogue with other faiths, other disciplines and business leaders and led to an initiative called A Blueprint for Better Business, which became an independent UK based charitable trust in 2014 – separate from the Church, and also independent of business, funded by charitable foundations and individuals.

Since Blueprint started in 2012 the “purpose agenda” has moved more centre stage, within both business, investment and academic research. In this paper three of Blueprint’s founders explore the developments in academic and business thought. They also outline Blueprint’s ongoing work to promote the vital importance of the quality of human relationships on a small and larger scale which is the core of what is needed if the good of people is to be at the heart of business success.

Click here to download the full paper ‘Advancing the common good through purpose led business: early learnings from A Blueprint for Better Business’s work with some major companies’