I read an interesting post over at Forbes that I decided to rewrite keeping African Fashion in mind and I will call it the power of purpose-led transformation for African Fashion. The post over at Forbes ( read here) was written by Valerie Keller who happens to be an executive director for EY Beacon Institute whose purpose is to build a better working world, one if I might add that Africa’s Fashion Industry desperately needs. EY is also committed to increasing trust and confidence in business, sustainable growth, development of talent in all its forms, and greater collaboration, something again the emerging industry needs.
But back to the post and why the power of purpose-led transformation matters for the future and success of African Fashion. According to Ms. Keller and I think that this is probably one of the most important points she made:
“A willingness – and ability – to transform is what separates those businesses that survive – and thrive – over time from those that wither and die.”
The key though is to transform African Fashion with a purpose-led transformation because and according to Ms. Keller again:
“An organization that embarks on a journey of purpose-led transformation recognizes that in order to succeed in today’s world it needs to embody a clear reason to exist above and beyond the pursuit of profit.”
Thus for African Fashion, while profit-centric models for business are primarily concerned with what their company or brand does and how they do it, a purpose-centric business models start by defining why their company or brand exists and then building the what and how from there. Furthermore and based on available evidence, Ms. Keller suggested that “answering why your organization exists and transforming through your purpose is the key to success in business in the 21st century.”
The reason why I decided to share this post today is because it spoke volumes to me personally and my intention for Isioma’s Style Report and hope for Africa’s Fashion industry in general. As my second year anniversary approaches, if you have followed me from the start, you would know that I have transformed this site completely and continue to do so on a daily basis all in the name of really answering why ISR exists in the first place. I think I finally got. To be the voice of African Fashion. Not major, just to voice my honest opinions, both good and bad on what people describe as Africa’s Fashion Industry.
Ms. Keller noted that finding your purpose or undergoing this purpose-led transformation has the potential to create a variety of benefits for organizations like myself in that a strong sense of purpose will act as a driver of innovation in terms of products or business offerings. “It is also a source of competitive differentiation that drives customer sales and loyalty and builds trust in the brand in the wider marketplace. Finally, purpose is a way of boosting morale, attracting talent, increasing productivity and decreasing workforce attrition, which, in turn, enhances the organizations agility and its ability to adapt in challenging market conditions.”
It have found my purpose (read the revised about us page here). It has not be easy, but I do hope that it will lead to more loyalty and trust as ISR does it best to ensure that someone is speaking in a credible and honest way about African Fashion.
Source: Valerie Keller for Forbes Magazine
Image: Lauren Fletcher for Gaschette Magazine