The Endowed Professor of Doing Good Values at George Mason University, Prof Gregory Unruh, discusses companies that have gone beyond moral influence. He points out Arison Investments' Bank Hapoalim as one company he studies set on attaining the clear goal of "altering the way business is done in every function and unit of the company."
In his latest MIT Sloan Management Review article he shows that sustainability managers are now more motivated by shared organizational and societal values, to lead a sustainability insurgency inside their organizations that move from "personality-focused" to process driven activity.
Chief sustainability officers (CSOs) identify who controls the tools needed to implement the desired sustainability actions, and apply an approach incorporating social intelligence to convince the tool owner to support the company's sustainability goals. "This," he claims, "creates organizational routines that stick."
Bank Hapoalin practiced their social insight, when employees and managers in touch with the community understood that providing customers with financial literacy advice is key for success, both for the bank and for the customers. Instead of just employing their commercial intelligenece in business decision making, the bank implements the value of Financial Freedom, one of 13 from the Doing Good Model by Shari Arison. Instead of promoting big loans and maximized mortgages, Bank Hapoalim gives customers know-how and tools to manage their financial responsibilities successfully.
"Hapoalim’s insight came through relating with the community and paying attention to the impacts of the company’s decisions on customers and society. In essence, they leveraged the social intelligence of their managers to improve company performance. This application of social intelligence is the goal of insurgent sustainability directors," says Unruh.