We were inspired by the inaugural Purpose conference in Sydney last week, where we shared the stage with entrepreneurial success stories like Keep Cup, Adara Group and Powershop.
Purpose wasn’t your typical business conference. Attendees were hand-picked to bring together like-minded businesses and individuals wanting to be energised and challenged by leading purpose- and values-driven businesses.
Managing Director, Damien Walsh, presented the Bank Australia journey as part of the plenary session, ‘Stories that started with Purpose.’
Having spent most of his life in cooperative enterprise and now leading a responsible bank, purpose-driven business isn’t new for Damien.
He explained that as Bank Australia has evolved since its beginnings as a social enterprise, the business has focused on market needs to understand its Purpose, along the way asking what value can we bring? Why do we exist?
"Be prepared for your purpose to evolve; ours changed over the course of our journey," he said.
“For Bank Australia it wasn’t only about us understanding our purpose, but also about how can we differentiate ourselves in a crowded market. To grow and be successful, we had to develop our story around responsible banking, it had to be genuine, we had to live it.”
“As a customer owned bank, being open and transparent, and having the values of the business reflect the values of our customers is intrinsic to our business.
“We may be in the business of banking, but we’re in business to create mutual prosperity for our customers, communities and the planet. That’s our purpose. And it’s built into our DNA.”
Find out more about Purpose on the website.