Impact Statement 2023

Impact Statement 2023

Impact Statement 2023

Looking back at 2023

With a new year starting, we always look back at the one that has just passed.

We do this to practice our self-awareness. We reflect on global developments, the impact we’ve made, the challenges we’ve encountered, and the lessons we have learned. We believe this foster growth and development.

And what a year 2023 has been. Globally, we have seen a number of positive developments – such as the growth of solar power towards becoming the world’s main source of energy by 2050, and AI allowing us to expedite the diagnosis of rare diseases. However, what has been catching our primary attention has been challenges related to global and local peace, as well as humanitarian tragedies.

In 2023, we continued to witness the rise of extreme political discourses and an increase in the complexity of conflicts with civilians on the frontline. This has led to uncertainties impacting billions of people as we enter 2024; a decisive Super Election year with polling taking place in 50 countries and more than 2 billion people potentially casting their vote. These developments do not only intensify global tensions but also underscore the importance of putting the lives of human beings back at the center of our priorities. Our focus should be on supporting policies that cater for an increased realization of human potential through both the physical fulfillment of basic needs, as well as the creation of preconditions for mental resilience. As highlighted by the World Health Organization (WHO), the absence of adequate mental health care constitutes a global emergency impacting individuals, communities, organizations, and nations. Continuing our current trajectory as a human species is no longer viable.

Along with our thinking at Voluntās, in 2023 the UN Secretary-General, Antonio Guterres, argued that we must revise the way we think and assess human progress. We must move away from “primarily relying on GDP as a metric of progress [… as it…] does not accurately reflect the world as it is – nor the world we want for future generations.[1]

As more people start to wonder how to build a more inclusive measurement of progress and sustainable development, we lean in. Just like we have done for almost 10 years.

We have long been advocating for a paradigm shift; the world needs to move from pure capitalism to a humanistic capitalism.

In 2023, we have remained mobilized across geographies and industries listening to the voices of more than 70.000 people globally while striving to pave the way for a progress where every economic, societal, or technological gain equals greater freedom for humans to pursue their potential.

[1] Guterres, 2023

voices heard

Acquisitions can be humanized

From our research we know that for most people, 47 percent of all meaning felt is derived from their work. Thus, for our partners across the globe, we have collected the insights from more than 40.000 employees and analyzed their thoughts to measure their organization’s ability to create meaningful work.

We have also developed self-awareness insights for more than 2.000 leaders to support them in their daily attempt to take steps up the ladder of self-respect.

Insights from more than

employees

We have delivered results on the cultural fit between a candidate and an organization more than 150 times, ensuring that a misfit in culture and virtues does not become a reason for meaningless relationships.

We have expanded this approach into the world of Mergers & Acquisitions with our Cultural Due Diligence framework™. This has enabled us to show how “acquisitions can be humanized”.

However, our curiosity does not stop here, and in 2024 we will dive deeper into understanding what makes cities and neighborhoods meaningful places to live. Watch this space!

As a global community, we need to stay mobilized in fragile environments

Throughout 2023, we have remained fully engaged in some of the most vulnerable and fragile contexts in the world. In Sudan alone, which is going through a forgotten but bloody civil war that has displaced more than 10 million people, we have worked to bring forward the voices of more than 6.000 individuals. This we have done to ensure they are heard when decisions are taken that impact their livelihoods. We have also scaled up our presence in the Levant, supporting refugees in Jordan and advising on emergency responses across the region. All this, while the devastating conflict between Israel and Hamas continues to deeply impact humans and relations globally.

In 2023, we started working in support of the Ukrainian people as they navigate the challenging times brought about by the full-scale Russian invasion. We are honored to now work with partners like IOM and WHO there to support the crucial assistance they provide to affected civilians. We have also continued to grow our presence in India and advise partners in Libya and Tunisia focusing on governance, youth, and health, as well as climate action across the region. In a commitment to advance our efforts in climate action and gender equality, we have enhanced our research and monitoring frameworks, and published our work for inspiration (Meaningful climate action, Save the children, 2023).

To underpin fact-based organizational decision-making, we have conducted over 38 impact assessments, monitoring, and research studies, spanning across more than 16 countries. During our diverse projects, we had the privilege of collecting the voices and testimonies of more than 10.000 talented human beings whose perspectives would have remained unheard if not for our extensive network of data-collection partners.

Making a global impact

In our commitment to innovation and human-centered solutions, we have directed significant investments into the development of Delphi, our online platform designed to propel us into a new era of scalable efficiency and impact. Delphi will be a one-stop-shop for our digital products and will be launched in 2024. It already looks set to become a cornerstone of our digital offerings where meaningful work and operational excellence go hand in hand.

2023 was also a crucial year for Voluntās’ academic and global partnerships. With the continued support of the ALV Foundation and UNICEF Denmark, we have collected data from more than 12.000 children in Denmark, India, and Norway to identify what drives meaning in their lives. Our goal is to change the way decision-makers and institutions develop child policies. With the Youth Meaningfulness Index, we are providing an avenue for children to share what brings meaning to their lives and contribute to their well-being. On a global scale, we have also conducted the largest study on Meaningfulness in Life ever carried out with more than 18.000 respondents across 20 countries (Global Meaningfulness Index 2023).

 

We are proud of our partnerships as they contribute to our impact and global reach. And we know that staying honest and close is crucial. This has led us to expand our geographical footprint and open offices in Kyiv, Munich, and Nairobi.

With these expansions, Voluntās now proudly maintains a permanent physical presence in ten countries, supported by a diverse team of over 85 colleagues representing 23 nationalities.

 

Colleagues

Countries with permanent presence

Nationalities

2015

🇩🇰 Copenhagen, Denmark

2017

🇹🇳 Tunis, Tunisia

2021

🇺🇸 San Francisco, United States

2022

🇸🇩 Khartoum, Sudan

🇮🇳 Mumbai, India

🇱🇧 Beirut, Lebanon

🇳🇴 Oslo, Norway

2023

🇺🇦 Kyiv, Ukraine

🇰🇪 Nairobi, Kenya

2024

🇩🇪 Münich, Germany

Making More Lives More Meaningful

For much of 2023, our Founder and CEO, Morten Albæk, has been touring Scandinavia with a series of presentations and talks related to his latest book revolving around false truths in life. A tour that included two sold-out shows at the Opera in Copenhagen. The book is currently being translated into English with the title “The False Truths we live by” and will be released in 2024.

We ended 2023 with a focus on our core and the publication of our new strategic narrative. In text, it lays out where we are coming from, who we are, how we interact, and what we hope to achieve.  It will therefore serve as our northern star as we enter 2024 and beyond.

Finally, in 2023, Voluntās achieved a significant milestone with the establishment of the Voluntās Foundation. The foundation represents a dedicated effort to broaden our influence and contribute to just, sustainable, and meaningful human advancement. As we embark on this journey, our excitement is palpable as this initiative allows us to extend our reach to even more like-minded partners. The foundation stands as a testament to our values and underscores our commitment to creating a lasting and positive legacy.

We are grateful to our colleagues, friends, and partners who serve as constant sources of learning, self-awareness, and growth. As we enter 2024, we look forward to many more partnerships and new exciting projects to come – all in pursuit of more meaningful organizations and societies.

Niklas Kabel Pedersen

Partner and Chief Operating Officer

nkp@voluntas.com

Rebecca

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At Voluntās, philosophers, anthropologists, psychologists, economists, dramaturgists, sociologists, political scientists and people of yet other academic backgrounds are all management consultants by profession and philosophers by heart. Together, we specialize in advising and working with companies, directorates, boards, investors, foundations, owners, leaders and governments on how to create, adapt and drive a meaningful culture, brand, society and planet.

We believe that this approach significantly increases the quality of living, while we know that it sustainably accelerates the productivity and profitability of doing business.

We pursue advisory and analytics to realize human potential and make more lives more meaningful for the colleagues in organizations, the consumers of brands, the citizens in societies and for all us children of our blue planet.

Contact

info@voluntasgroup.com

+45 3111 6020