Economy for the Common Good – Our Future?

Economy for the Common Good – Our Future?

„Germans wish for a new economic order – to Germans, growth and money are not so important – the environment and social equality are much more so” Die Zeit 8/15/2012


Renowned German weekly newspaper “Die Zeit“ wrote on 8.15.2012: „Germans wish for a new economic order – to Germans, growth and money are not so important –
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Circular Economy & Fairphone – Inspiration from Nature

Circular Economy & Fairphone – Inspiration from Nature


Focus on higher purpose seems to be precluded when a leader is deeply rooted in ego because the currency oft he ego is fear, how can a leader be available to lead others in a conscious way if they are busy defending a fractured ego?Sarah Morris


Ellen MacArthur, one of the world’s best sailors, has constantly pushed things to the limit, ever since her love of sailing began. After achieving the great feat of breaking several world records, she felt that it was time for a new beginning in her life. She had learned one of life’s main principles while at sea: Not only to conserve the resources at hand on the boat, but also to follow the cycle of nature, and understand that in nature there is no waste. In the cycle of nature, everything is used, all that comes to life and all that decays. It is the food chain of nature – that which is “waste” becomes fuel for new life. Unfortunately, our current economy works in exactly the opposite way –in exponential periods, we operate as a “linear economy”“ instead of a „Circular Economy“ and with that, we reach the limits of our growth.

>> YouTube #11 – Ellen MacArthur, Rethinking the Future

Just imagine yourself experiencing a day, in the forest, on a lake, or on the seaside in a time warp of a year’s cycle within one day. Fast-forward your observation through the individual changes of the seasons – open up your senses, see it, hear it, feel it. Suppose you were standing next to a tree, what would you see? If you, like me, would imagine a ripe apple or plum tree in August, you could experience the maturity of the tree, hanging full of fruit, which would soon be harvested. After harvest time, the days get shorter, and the sunlight is less intense as autumn draws in. You will witness beautiful leaves in colors of yellow, brown and red. It’s time to let go. Perhaps pictures of the Indian summer on the east coast of the US come to mind. Over time, the trees become bare, leaves fall to the ground and begin to rot, as they provide the humus needed for a new cycle of trees after winter, the time of contemplation and reflection, in which the tree is preparing for spring, when it then unfolds its buds and draws from the nutrients of the humus layer from the previous year.

This is the natural cycle of nature, a perfectly coordinated and mutually dependent system, in which waste, for example, in the form of leaves, is not only used, but is anticipated – it is an integral part of nature’s design. It was through this observation of nature, and intense experiences at sea – 2500 miles away from civilization – combined with endless optimism, and the wish to contribute to a better world that Ellen MacArthur began to ponder how the existing ”either or” mindset of the economy and ecology could evolve into a newly interconnected reality. After years of learning, meeting with scientists, entrepreneurs and policymakers, she created the basic principle of the “Circular Economy“.


Ellen_MacArthur_Bryan_LedgardShe wasn’t the only one with this idea in mind. German eco-visionary Michael Braungart, chemist, process engineer and former Greenpeace environmental activist, already wrote a book in 2002, together with American architect William McDonough on the subject by the name of „Cradle to Cradle“. „If only people were to design products properly, so that they are either biodegradable or completely separable into recyclable parts, then they could put an end to the theme of conserving resources“[1], says Braungart. There is a new book on the shelf from this duo called “The Upcycle: Beyond Sustainability–Designing for Abundance“. Bill Clinton wrote the foreword for this book. The message is as simple as it is effective.Growth is not a question of energy, but a question of material and design. A product should never be “hybrid”. It must either consist entirely of biodegradable or non-decomposing substances.

Material savings of 700 billion Dollars in „Consumer Goods“

Let’s be clear about this, the primary issue isn’t about climate neutrality, it’s about the intelligent use of our cyclical system of nature and how it can be adapted into product design and beyond for the design of business models. We’re also not just talking about resource efficiency, which is the goal of every business today, but mainly for monetary reasons. A McKinsey & Company report [2] estimates a potential global savings of 700 billion USD for the consumer goods sector alone.

Global potential for a 25 trillion Dollar Circular Economy

We’re especially referring to new entrepreneurial potential using the principle of Circular Economy. In 2010, Ellen MacArthur founded the Ellen MacArthur Foundation, whose sole aim is to explore this principle and to find ways in which it can be introduced in a practical way into the global economy and society. She has attracted very prominent supporters to this project. Founding partners include Cisco, British Telecom, B&Q, National Grid and Renault. According to a report in collaboration with McKinsey & Company, the shift towards a Circular Economy could generate 25 trillion USD annually for the global economy by 2025. (McKinsey 2013)


[1] Borchhardt, A. (2013): Kein Müll: Der Öko-Visionär Michael Braungart arbeitet an einer Zukunft, in der alles wieder verwertbar ist. Er will eine Welt ohne Abfall, eine Welt zum Prassen. Damit macht er sich nicht nur Freunde, in SZ from 8/21/2013, Süddeutscher Verlag, München, P. 3
[2] McKinsey & Company (2013): Towards the Circular Economy, Opportunities for the consumer goods sector, Executive Summary, No. 2/2013 Ellen
Photo of Ellen MacArthur by Bryan Ledgard


weekly excerpt from the book THE NEXT WAVE IN BUSINESS
wishing you a sustainable week
truly yours, Stefan Götz+


Götz Werner – Chairman dm Drugstore- Success the Human Way

Götz Werner – Chairman dm Drugstore- Success the Human Way


Entrepreneursneed to see the forest for the trees. If a company’s sole raison d’être is making society better, it must have an interest in how society develops. Götz Werner


Company facts

The first dm drugstore chain was founded in 1973 by Götz W. Werner in Karlsruhe, Germany. dm has approximately 2,700 shops and employs 44,000 people. In the fiscal year of 2011/2012, the company achieved sales of around 6.9 billion Euros. Of this sum, 5.1 billion originated in Germany.

About Goetz W. Werner

Götz Werner’s dm business concept and his idea for an unconditional basic income have received a lot of attention from various media outlets. “Götz Werner is pop. When he speaks – the hall is packed full– whether in Hamburg, Stuttgart or Berlin”, wrote the TAZ on the 27th of November 2006. “Oh, how wonderful it would be when the government had someone like Götz Werner, the man from the dm shops in their ranks, who has become successful by thinking and acting in an extraordinary way.” As written in the German newspaper Tagesspiegel on the 24th of June 2006.

Götz Werner’s anthroposophical foundation

Götz Werner’s vision is rooted in an anthroposophical ideology ofalignment and fulfillmentin thesocial system. The term Anthroposophy means „human wisdom“ and was founded by Rudolf Steiner (1861–1925). „For Steiner, Anthroposophy stood for creating a consciousness of humanity (…),a guide toself-knowledgeandknowledge of the natureof man.“[1]


Goetz_WernerGötz Werner’s integral entrepreneurial compass

Purpose, vision & mission

In an interview with Martin Wittig, former CEO of Roland Berger Strategy Consultants, Götz Werner sheds light on his vision and mission in business:

need to see the forest for the trees.If a company’s sole raison d’être is making society better, it must have an interest in how society develops. Social involvement is one of the most important roles of an entrepreneur, particularly when you get older. All entrepreneurs should aim to create scope for people within the business to become active outside of it. The better you know people, the better you can respond to their needs. If you can gain a better understanding of what drives people, you can be a better manager, know your customers and suppliers better, and predict the future more effectively. I don’t believe in extrinsic motivation; management must create a situation in which employees are intrinsically motivated – I’d even go so far as to say that bonus systems penalize workers. Employees need an income so they can live, and they need their work so they can grow.“[1]

Götz Werner describes the core principles of dm’s corporate culture and the underlying integral entrepreneurial compass in his book “Einkommen für alle” (Werner 2009):

Identity & strategy

  • We see our company as a modern community of people, with as little hierarchical structure as possible.
  • Not only do we want to encourage the competence of our staff, but also allow for the personal development of character. At dm, it is a goal to create a space that nurtures personal fulfillment.
  • The dm-spirit – Our products and store environment can easily be copied by competitors, but what makes us stand out is our inner stance, the place we operate from.



  • For us at dm, the basis for cooperation is grounded in collegial trust. At the heart of dm culture lies an overall positive, optimistic view of humanity coupled with confidence.
  • A negative view of humanity only ushers in aspects that make it impossible to build a positive and effective corporate culture. Distrust, pessimism, control mania, greed, self-centeredness, and yes, egoism all muddle good business.
  • When I am disappointed, it does nobody any good to become negative about everything. It is futile to pile on the stress and try to control everything. Control is evasive, and people and situations move on.
  • Freiherr von Stein said: „Confidence refines a man, eternal guardianship inhibits his maturity.“



  • Every human carries with them the wish to grow and bear fruit.
  • In a holistically run company, ROI (Return of investment) and ROS (return of sales) can be an important factor for success, but in order to provide sustainability for all intents and purposes, sometimes it’s important to let go of the reins.
  • Management isn’t there to put on the pressure, instead, it’s all about engaging in positive development.
  • The role of the supervisor is no longer about giving detailed orders, but to think strategically, and to lay the ground for fundamental steps to be taken. Managers need to keep in mind that setting a strategic path will only be fruitful when they can help strengthen their employee’s awareness of the strategy and what it calls for. It isn’t just about managing people; it is about encouraging their awareness.

 Photo Götz Werner by re:publica

[1] Ramge, T. (2011): The Detail of Retail: One-one one with Wittig, in Think Act Journal, Roland Berger Strategy Consultants September, München, P. 4-8
[1] Wikipedia: „Anthroposophie“,


weekly excerpt from the book THE NEXT WAVE IN BUSINESS
wishing you a successful week coming from human wisdom
truly yours, Stefan Götz+




Change Leaders are like seismographs that reveal important shifts

Change Leaders are like seismographs that reveal important shifts


  • Change Leaders don’t engage in battles against present circumstances. On the contrary, they are grateful for all that has led up to this very moment. Experience stimulates their curiosity to discover even more possibilities, for themselves and especially for the collective.
  • They are connected to the here and now. Their antennas are picking up countless new opportunities from the future – just like seismographs that observe, listen, feel, and sense what wants to manifest. Change Leaders have the awareness that an extraordinary potential-filled life is possible when we live life’s unresolved questions. Clear-cut answers and ancient paradigms are no replacement for freedom. That is what constitutes a meaningful life.



Change Leaders create more change leaders, not fans

Change Leaders create more change leaders, not fans

Change_Leader_www.stefan-goetz.com_5Change Leaders inspire everyone to experience the power of transformation. They enable others to become change leaders themselves – not create fans or followers.

They support people in developing their own consciousness, and a greater understanding of the important role that deep, trusting relationships have in the healthy development of our culture.

Leading with the Heart could make a Difference to your Business

Leading with the Heart could make a Difference to your Business

In this Interview with Dr. Chuck Spezzano, US Bestselling Author on Personal Transformation, Stefan Götz reveals inspring insights, a new understanding of business and rule-breaking leadership approaches that will help any Change Leader to unfold the company’s purpose – for the people, the planet and profit.

A call for a different kind of entrepreneurship that is both sustainable and in partnership to lead the market.

Core statements from Chuck Spezzano:

  • You need a leader who is flexible themselves. You need a leader who is willing to keep growing. We have dinosaurs leading the way at times. We have to get over the dinosaur in ourselves.
  • So we keep demanding our way rather than let me see the new way, let me find a better way.
  • Analysis is just one tool but if it is used in a wrong way, it quickly becomes a defense. It becomes things that you break everything apart but you miss the whole picture, all the different pieces do not give you a vision.
  • All this is were business is being so right, it is being defensive. Business is meant to be the leader. You are not the leader if you’re the one defending where you got to.

„…really inspiring…“

Executive Champions Workshop in Vermont, USA

Executive Champions Workshop in Vermont, USA

Otto_Scharmer,_2012Building personal & collective leadership capacity for systems change & innovation

Nurture new thinking and relationships with other executive leaders at this powerful setting for strategic conversations around key issues shaping our collective work on systems leadership and change. Engage in deep dialogue with peer leaders from diverse organizations and sectors who share your aspirations and face similar challenges. The Society for Organizational Learning’s Executive Champions’ Workshop (ECW) offers a rare opportunity for reflection and conversation around questions that matter.

  • Termin: 19. August bis 22. August 2014
  • Ort: Vermont, USA
  • Zur Website

Photo C. Otto Scharmer, 2012 by