Towards Sustainable Economic Recovery

Working for the greater good is deeply embedded into the Mahindra Group’s DNA. While the Group proved an exemplar by leveraging its manufacturing competencies to combat the spread of the coronavirus pandemic and lend a helping hand to the underprivileged during the lockdown, it is now making efforts to create an inclusive and sustainable post-Covid economy that benefits the planet, society, and shareholders in equal measure.

Mahindra Group Chairman Anand Mahindra along with 13 other global CEOs, part of the ‘Leaders on Purpose’ coalition, has rolled out a roadmap to ‘build the economic system better’ rather than simply ‘building it back’. In the lead up to the UN General Assembly week in New York in September 2020, the Leaders on Purpose, through an open letter, have called on governments to accelerate the transition and urged businesses and governments to join them in building a new economic narrative for the world. The group of 14 CEOS have a combined global workforce of over 500,000 employees and a cumulative annual revenue of over $100 billion dollars.

Underscoring the need and imperative for the ‘Purpose-first’ economy, Mr. Mahindra said, “Today, more than ever, the world needs to be able to reimagine a new future. A future in which people can feel safe and protected.”

The initiative by the Leaders on Purpose is an effort towards defining the new environment. “This provides a much-needed aspirational framework that has the power to change the language of business discourse and the way in which we regard the future,” he added.

Beside Mr. Mahindra, the global CEO coalition includes Ajay Banga (Master Card), Alan Murray (Fortune Media), Anand Mahindra (Mahindra Group), Dan Hendrix (Interface), Dylan Taylor (Voyager Space Holdings), Emmanuel Faver (Danone), Fejke Sijbesma (DSM), Frans van Houten (Philips), Dr James Mwangi (Equity Bank), Jean-Paul Agon (L’Oréal), Jon Denton (ICC), Mike Doyle (Omnicom-Ketchum), Roberto Marques (Natura & Co), and Stefan De Loecker (Beiersdorf).

While governments across the globe debate economic and social policies to jumpstart the economy in a post-COVID world, the roadmap by the Leaders on Purpose provides a practical course to proactively redesign corporate structures and government policies to develop a more supportive ecosystem for organisations under a new business logic.

The letters also committed to advance the purpose-first economy by leveraging their procurement, innovation, research and development, and investment to accelerate the growth of the sector.

The ‘Build it Better’ framework includes six key imperatives for leaders in both public and private sectors to guide innovation of public policy as well as corporate and financial structures to accelerate the progress of a purpose-first economy. These include: recognising the purpose-first sector; crafting incentives and policies; incentivising innovations of financial products, risk assessment, valuation models and ratings; a design for a safe, educated, and healthy society; enabling a supporting ecosystem, and leaving no one behind.

The group’s actions were further supported by the launch of the Fourth Sector Policy Hackathon which saw the convergence of industry, academic and institutional partners to resolve public policy challenges and to identify solutions requiring collective actions across global public, private, non-profit and fourth sectors.

“The philosophy of the Leaders on Purpose resonates deeply with Mahindra’s vision, and has the potential to become a movement which will define the future for generations to come,” said Mr Mahindra.


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