It has been a while and a lot has happened. Sometimes too much to comprehend. At the same time, lots of excitement, lots of decisions and changes. And challenges ahead of me. Silence is a mechanism that I know best. To cope with the new, I tend to go inside and make sure all is perfectly in place before I go out. Time to quit that habit and start sharing.
After leaving Microsoft and a job that I described as the “best” ever, I wanted to find out what it meant to be an entrepreneur, resulting into starting up RabbleInc. With the experience, I gained in Microsoft, I helped people and organizations with change, leadership and cultural challenges, whilst taking the time to contemplate on what workwise really mattered to me. I met beautiful people, had impact and earned money. But something important was missing.
During that time, I also started to work for/with Index Initiative* and along the way my heart was drawn to fully step into this social startup. Full of doubts of course. Did I break a promise to myself? What about being an entrepreneur….? (Excuse me, did I mention the social startup?) Maybe it seems different than a regular startup. Probably because of its purpose and its funding. But according to me, Index Initiative has all the characteristics of a startup. We are building an organization from scratch and we are as insecure about our financial future than any of our commercial colleague startups.
Looking back, being responsible for organizational development within a large corporate was wonderful, though it had limits in regard to influence and impact. It gets a whole different meaning within this startup. It is a blanc sheet of paper. We must create an organization aligned with the essence of our purpose. How to build an alliance, is the question we are asking ourselves repeatedly. Hence, we have to literally think about everything. Structure, people, culture, governance, technology, you name it.
Recently we launched the consultation of the World Benchmarking Alliance. At the UN’s General Assembly in New York and all the hard work of the previous years, seems to pay off. Lots of support and endorsements. (Curious? Have a look at www.worldbenchmarkingalliance.org.). As a result, there is so much work to be done with the risk not to take the time to ask ourselves the question what it means to build an alliance. And I know from my experience that is important to arrange reflection time. That is why I decided not to share my perspectives on the institutional design but I will write and share the outcome of me asking other people what they think.
So, after being silent for almost half a year, I will start writing again. And in English as you may have noticed. Sharing will go beyond the borders of The Netherlands within the World Benchmarking Alliance. That’s why.
(*Index Initiative develops benchmarks that aim to encourage industries and companies to enhance their contribution to the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) closest to their core business. The benchmarks bring clarity on the role, the expectations as well as the performance. See also www.indexinitiative.org)