By Rachel Adrian
What is New Power?New power is an emerging trend of people who are rejecting traditional business, government and society as a whole. New power is more transparent, participatory and collaborative than traditional business.Jeremy Heimans describes new power as being like a ‘current’ or a wave. New power picks up energy and gains strength as it goes, rallying more and more people along the way.To contrast, he describes old power as being like currency. It is held by the few and guarded at all costs. Traditional businesses operate on old power.Watch Jeremy Heimans TED Talk about the emergence of New Power: In recent years we have really seen new power gain traction in the business world. Millenials especially, have rallied around innovative new concepts such as the sharing economy, B Corporations and social entrepreneurism. Old power is based upon mindless consumption, while new power requires active participation of all involved. The following graphic shows where some of your favorite businesses sit between new and old power models.New Power + Shared ValueBoth the new power movement and shared value focus on bridging the gaps between business and social good. New power, by definition empowers companies to create shared value and allow stakeholders to have a say in how your company operates. Jeremy Heimans, co-author of the December 2014 Harvard Business Review article, encourages traditional, old power companies to ‘occupy themselves’ and critique their internal operations. This exercise can be very helpful in highlighting key improvements and uncovering inconsistencies between the company and stakeholder values. Could your company benefit from looking at the new power model and giving stakeholders a voice in your operations?
By combining new power and shared value models, you can create true
social change that is built to scale.
The coming years will be a delicate balance between old and new power. Making the transition to a new power mindset can be incredibly difficult and is not for all companies. By defining a core purpose, establishing meaningful partnerships and incorporating shared value into your company; you can start to move closer to a new power value system.At the 2015 Shared Value Leadership Summit, there was a lot of discussion about new power, and the changing dynamics of today’s world. As we transition into new power, co-creative partnerships and collaboration will be key. Check out this great slide presentation from Jeremy Heimans presentation at the 2015 Shared Value Leadership Summit.