This is for change makers
The objectives of this Project are to:
- develop the concept of the For-Purpose Enterprise (“FPE”);
- design legal vehicles and related documentation for FPEs;
- provide support to change makers who want to use the FPE; and
- advocate the concept of FPEs.
For Businesses The writing is on the wall. Our world has experienced rapid, structural changes that have made it necessary for us to move beyond our present-day concept of business. Where the purpose of business today is to maximise shareholder value, the market, responding to the pressures of the real world, will ultimately require that businesses shift to a purpose-first paradigm.
For Non-Profits Simultaneously, the changes in the world are opening up many opportunities for non-profit organisations to maximise their impact and move towards financial sustainability. Various impetuses exist for non-profits to reach beyond the traditional paradigm of charity into the world of entrepreneurship. The For-Purpose Enterprise concept is a vehicle for non-profits who are ready to harness the power of business while remaining loyal to their purpose.
It’s for leaders from the business and non-profit worlds
The For-Purpose Enterprise concept can be adopted by change makers from both the business and non-profit worlds. It is for leaders who are already aware that our systems today are defective but believe that there must be another way.
The For-Purpose Enterprise Project advocates for a paradigm shift in how we think about organisations, the role of business, and the concept of a company. It is for pioneers who are prepared to learn and unlearn, and create their own success stories.
Who we are
We are a diverse community of organisations and individuals who believe that purpose-orientated enterprises have immense potential for leading deep positive change in society.
We dream of a world where:
- everyone can live a dignified life
- everyone acts as a steward in service of others
- businesses gain their legitimacy from the usefulness of their purposes
- corporate aspirations must be aligned with, and always loyal to, human aspirations
The For-Purpose Enterprise Project will always be independent and not-for-profit. The discussions here are in the context of the law and practice in Malaysia, a former British colony. Our focus is on solutions that can be implemented today, without depending on legislative reform or policy change.
Join the FPE Project!
- get on our mailing list and access previously shared contents and discussions;
- share about what you do; and
- join us in our community meetings.
We are building a community of people who share our objectives. Our learnings and outputs will always be accessible on an open source basis.
The success of the Project will require multi-disciplinary input. As such, you could be a social entrepreneur, a businessman, an academic, a social worker, a graduate or some one with skills, expertise or resources to share, we would be delighted to have your contribution.
“It takes a village to raise a child.” Come and join our village.
Message from the founder, Kiu Jia Yaw
I hope this Project can help change agents make the most of the opportunities in the market to serve their purposes and causes. In an increasingly commodified world, it is high time that purpose- and cause-driven groups venture beyond the non-profit world into the business world to deliver value and impact that are aimed towards their purposes and causes. At the same time, we see business people venturing beyond philanthropy and corporate social responsibility (CSR), to use their entrepreneurial skills and capital to bring positive social impact.
However, in harnessing the power of business to drive social change or deliver social impact, we must first be aware that business-as-usual causes social and environmental harm.
Such harm flow from many levels and have been well researched. From a design perspective, many of these problems arise from the fact that today’s typical corporation, operating within the present economic system, exists to maximise shareholder value. When the pursuit of profit prevails over the purpose for which the business was formed, the organisation loses social legitimacy.
I believe that by putting purpose back in the heart of business, we can reintroduce human values and human aspirations – such as those expressed in the Sustainable Development Goals – into the heart of business. In this sense, business success would have a richer meaning. FPEs, with purpose written into their DNA, could be the disruptive units in our dysfunctional capitalistic economic system.
I have faith that people, with their efforts augmented by well-designed business structures, can make a real, lasting difference.
Vision for tomorrow
This Project, in its true proportions, will extend far beyond my personal capacity. My legal knowledge is limited, and the legal aspect is only one small piece of the puzzle.
I therefore hope to build a community of practice around the FPE Project. This community will be the steward of the Project. With its collective intelligence and wisdom, it will chart the path of the Project.
We want to work towards realigning the present-day notion of business with human aspirations. Our dream is to see purpose-orientated enterprises out-compete conventional businesses in our lifetime.
All contents on this website are by Kiu Jia Yaw and licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 International License (click on the link to find out more about how you are free to share and adapt the information you find here while protecting the healthy development of the FPE Project).