Fresh Thinking from Fronesys

Interrelated was asked to create an infographic to help explain the latest ‘Fresh Thinking from Fronesys‘; By basing company decisions on interconnected information across multiple capitals, the global business community will collectively find a way to address the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals for 2030 (SDGs).

Fresh Thinking from Fronesys
By basing company decisions on interconnected information across multiple capitals we will collectively find a way to address the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals for 2030.

This fresh thinking from Fronesys is without doubt ‘big’. Therefore, it is good to know that their team is also very well connected. In this way their fresh thinking may well become a reality.

We soon realised, as the work unraveled, that the story needed to be told through four separate infographics (shown here).

Fresh Thinking from Fronesys
Rather than using a narrow focus on financial tools, today’s best performers are basing their business decisions on interconnected information across multiple capitals, including; Natural, Relationship, Human, Manufactured, Intellectual and Finance

Rethinking the company

The first infographic introduced the concept that a company is a source of light in the world. We chose to use a flashlight to represent this.

The next two infographics incorporated a prism. This represents the reporting ‘system’ into which the lights are shone. Fronesys is interested in this reporting system and the impact and dependencies that result from the light source as it passes through such a system.

The dilemma

In the first instance (below), the prism is broken. The refracted light emitted simply comes out from one source – in this case ‘red’ – representing the ‘Financial Capital’. This is the basis of most economic models today.

Fresh Thinking from Fronesys
(i) Traditional business management, based on financial analysis, has not kept pace with the seismic shifts taking place over the last thirty years.

However, there is now an emerging understanding that we cannot continue thinking that financial capital is the only capital that counts.

It is worth reading ‘Doughnut Economics: Seven Ways to Think Like a 21st-Century Economist‘ (by Kate Raworth). This book elaborates on the dilemma facing the world today and the part economics has played in this.

We do not understand the value of nature. Nor do we understand the nature of value.

Alternatively, it is worth reflecting on the following statement by Milton Friedman; “The sole purpose of companies is to make profit without deception.” Is it? Perhaps our response to this statement should be as follows; “At any cost, Mr Friedman?”

The solution

Fronesys, and the team gathered around it, aims to collaborate and innovate with the global business community. Only by developing this together will they succeed to drive change – shaping the creation of new, 21st century, business tools and practices

Fronesys’s fresh thinking on this matter is best captured in the second image (below). The prism is pure and refracts the light as six proposed multi-capitals. These are; Natural, Relationship, Human, Manufactured and Intellectual, in addition to Finance (each represented by a different colour).

Fresh Thinking from Fronesys
(ii) Only by making multi-capital decision tools credible in the boardroom and among investors, will we be able to realise Integral Thinking (true materiality).

Making this alignment of thinking around the reporting capitals, credible in the boardroom and among investors, is essential. Only then will the global business community be able to start to address the UN’s Sustainability Goals for 2030.

Fresh Thinking from Fronesys

This infographic story was designed to be published in a Fronesys White Paper. It will also be featured on their website and generally used as stimulus for further discussion on the subject

Interrelated develop the “Fresh Thinking from Fronesys” slogan and graphic in early 2018. It was developed as an integral part of an infographic we also produced then. That infographic was designed to help explain an ambition to Transform the flows of corporate information. Th e resulting image is now referred to, among academics, as the ‘Tap and Lake’ story (for obvious reasons).

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