Lynne Twist is the author of the best-selling The Soul of Money: Transforming Your Relationship with Money and Life and founder of the Soul of Money Institute. She has worked with over 100,000 people in 50 countries for more than 40 years, as a global visionary committed to alleviating poverty, ending world hunger, and supporting social justice and environmental sustainability.
Cofounder of the Pachamama Alliance, Lynne has worked with some of the most resource-poor and resource-wealthy individuals in the world and has gained a profound understanding of humanity’s relationship with money. Seeing the dysfunction and suffering that is so often attached to money, Lynne is committed to bringing a new level of consciousness to the way that money impacts our life and society.
1440: What advice would you give to a young entrepreneur looking to start a mission-driven venture with social impact in mind?
Lynne Twist: Looking at your intention, what you really are wanting to accomplish for the world—not for yourself but for the world—will give you the satisfaction, the energy, the vitality, the life force to do it brilliantly and well. And your failures will give you a leap forward, every one of them. And there will be failures because that’s part of how we learn.
I also suggest that the money that you use to start up your venture comes from people who are mission driven and consistent with your mission to be of service in some way, so that the actual money that fuels your enterprise comes from heart, comes from clear intention—not only to get a return that’s financial, but a social return, a return that serves, a return that makes the world a better place.
And then to know that the way you treat your people—particularly your founding partners, your early adopters, your early people—really matters.
You’re all going to work really hard, probably harder than you ever worked in your life. But with joy, with vision, with laughter, with camaraderie, with love, with caring for each other, you can make it through anything.
Keeping your mission and your vision and your purpose super clear in every encounter, and your intention super clear in every encounter, will have you succeed beyond your wildest dreams and ensure that you have fun doing it (even if you don’t get any sleep).
1440: What do you see the world of business doing these days in productive, prosperous, and assertive ways to balance a drive for profit with a commitment to the planet?
Lynne Twist: I love the whole movement towards conscious business, conscious companies, and conscious capitalism. I love the B Corp idea. I love the GameChanger 500 badges for companies that are doing business in a way that is for the highest good. Business is the largest institution on earth, and for us to really change the trajectory in which we’re headed—with global warming in particular—business needs to play a huge role and probably lead the way.
We have a phrase in the Pachamama Alliance mission statement that I think is very powerful: “to bring forth an environmentally sustainable, spiritually fulfilling, socially just human presence on this planet.” I think when each and every entrepreneur and corporation awakens to the privilege and the nobility of taking on and bringing forth that way of living as part of their work, then I think we can turn the ship quickly.
Business has so much muscle, so much expertise, so many standards of excellence, and employs or engages more human beings than anything on earth.
We are in an evolutionary leap as a human family, and business can and, I think, will lead the way of that evolutionary leap.
And that’s the biggest job business has ever tackled—and business will do it better than any sector on earth.
Join Lynne Twist and 1440 cofounder Scott Kriens for a special evening event at 1440 Multiversity on Jan 11, 2018: Money, Ethics, & Entrepreneurship.
Lynne Twist will be teaching The Soul of Money: Transforming Your Relationship with Money and Life with Sara Vetter, March 9 – 11, 2018, at 1440 Multiversity.
This interview was conducted by Kate Green Tripp, Managing Editor for 1440 Multiversity.