This is NOT the peak of civilization…

The world I going to hell – plenty of people to tell you that. I take great comfort in knowing that this is NOT the peak of our civilization. And with this realization comes a different ease to investigating new ideas and suggesting change. As long as you don’t just cut back on the existing system and processes but take the time and energy to develop something new and better, change will most likely equal a step forward. This allows for the use of another word for change – development!

The status-quo obsession

In the discussions about sustainability and climate, we keep hearing the argument that we can’t make changes to the current setup. There seems to be an underlying assumption that the current version of our society, of a sector or a business is the optimum version in terms of a host of living conditions and profit, revenue, or GDP. We especially hear it from the political level, but also quite often amongst business leaders.

But please look up from your screen and look around you – at the actual world. How is the development going in areas such as:

  • Expectations for the future.
  • Number of young people that consider not having children because of the state of the world.
  • Carbon emission, biodiversity, and number and severity of weather extremes.
  • Number of kids with stress, anxiety, and depression.
  • Number of people that find their work fulfilling and engaging.
  • Number of people with malnutrition issues (too much, too little or the wrong intake).
  • Add more areas as you like…
Steffen et. al., 2015

So how can anyone in a general statement or as a starting point seriously say that it is critical to preserve the current state?

Higher ambitions, please

To me, it represents a very low level of ambition and imagination. We must elevate our game.

The good thing is that you can just pick your favourite theme/problem and start imagining and exploring how you can use your business as a vehicle to create positive change e.g. by finding ways to solve or soften the problems your ideal clients are facing. The more you take away their pain the more valuable you are! That is your business strategy in a nutshell.

A good question to start with is “What would it take to make our product or solution a full and remarkable solution to our ideal client’s main problems?” Sit back for a second and consider to what extent your product or solution today handles everything associated with the problem or just parts of it. Odds are, that you focus on one part of the problem as that is your speciality. But that is like a restaurant only thinking about the food not really bothering to ensure that there are tables, chairs, cutlery etc. or a car manufacturer only dealing with the design and the engine. Just like the restaurant and the car manufacturer don’t have to do everything themselves, they do have to make sure that they through partnerships do have the full solution ready.

Put yourself in your customer’s shoes and brainstorm (wildly and with not limits) on what should be part of your offering for it to be that full and remarkable solution that offers the best way to deliver the service and solve essential problems for them. And don’t worry about dreaming up crazy stuff like having Opera Winfrey or the Prime Minister deliver the introduction speech that sets the right tone. You can always scale back – that is a lot easier than going in the opposite direction.

I have also created a more systematic way of approaching it that is part of my method “The Impact Blueprint” that you can find in my book “Making Sustainability Profitable”. It is a way of mapping out all the opportunities you can see and then filtering them up against your top 5 problems and your ideals customers’ problems (you can read an article I wrote about it here)


🔥Is it your responsibility to do it? Some think so.

🔥Is it required by law? No.

🔥Is it a moral responsibility? Perhaps.

🔥Will governments fix it? Probably not.

But more interesting –

🌱 What opportunities do you see it could bring you?

🌱 Would you like to work with and be affiliated with it?

If so, don’t be afraid to rock the boat…


🌎What problem/bigger cause would you like to be associated with solving?💚