Why now more than ever we feel the need to contribute

Paul

by Paul van Schie

Last week, we had a great conversation with Edelman’s former Director of Purpose Andrew Wilson. We found that his view on the current state of the purpose economy aligns very much with what we see happening all around us here at GoodUp:

“What the past four or five months have shown, is that people have been forced to radically re-evaluate what they value in society. In the UK particularly this has resulted in a much stronger sense of community. When the government called for volunteers to help out in the caring sectors, they asked for 250.000 people and got 750.000.”

At GoodUp, we’ve also seen this increase in purposeful activities happen across our platforms. Earlier we wrote this piece about some of the initiatives that Achmea rolled out over the past months, and believe us when we say they’re a great example, but no exception. Also our recent articles (1, 2) on activism show a surprising transformation to a general tendency to support activist behaviour.

This article covers some of the workings of this transformation. This week’s biggest insights came from a  brilliant episode of the popular series Explained on Netflix. In only 20 minutes, it explains how our coping mechanisms fuel the self-transcendent action we’re taking collectively.

Happy reading!

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Why now more than ever we feel the need to contribute

Watch this brilliant episode of the popular series Explained on Netflix. In only 20 minutes, it explains how our coping mechanisms fuel the self-transcendent action we’re taking collectively.

— SPOILER ALERT: skip this part if you want to watch the episode–

One of the biggest causes of stress is uncertainty. So the extreme uncertainty around Covid 19 builds up stress in our bodies. Since one of the most common measures to fight the spread of the virus is a lockdown, our options for relieving that stress are seriously limited.

Still there are a number of things that help us cope with this stress. One such thing is volunteering.

Yup, volunteering.

Helping people engages our brain’s reward system. And makes our levels of cortisol, one of the main stress hormones plummet. And it doesn’t just feel good. It’s actually really good for you. Volunteering even trumps exercising. Find out how all this works.

Great quotes from our conversation with Andrew Wilson

We will not be publishing an article of the conversation we had, but we did want to share some of his remarks the current state of the purpose economy:

“What the current crisis has shown, is the need for greater business resilience. And what the financial markets have shown, is that stocks that are being classified as ESG (Environmental, Social, Governmental), have been hit less hard than the main stream stock market. So those companies that already had these issues on their radar, have shown to be better performing in the crisis.”

“I think purpose and particularly sustainability in the next few months will change into discussions about business resilience and long term sustainability, moving it from the green and social space to  sustainability in the broader sense of the word. This is actually long term business success. And so the rise of ESG and the rise of sustainability will be part of a changing business strategy to make business more resilient to the external shocks that we’ve all just experienced. So purpose is more about long term business resilience.”

Black Lives Matter May Be the Largest Movement in U.S. History

This New York Times article presents a quantitative deep dive into the BLM movement in the US. It puts the scale of this movement into perspective, comparing it with other movements, such as the Women’s March in 2017, on the basis of a multitude of data sources.Employee activism is on the rise.

Read the article