Dan Layug receives the very first INSEAD Young Alumni Achievement Award from INSEAD dean Ilian Mihov and alumni association president Sadia KhanDuring my MBA at INSEAD in 2017, I learned that collaboration among individuals can produce more results than the sum of the parts of individual contributions. In the business world, this means that no organization can enact large-scale sustainable change alone.
Last month, I refreshed my skills at the INSEAD Alumni Forum in Geneva, Switzerland. This two-day conference is part of the institution’s lifelong learning initiative to ensure alumni continually acquire the latest knowledge applicable to their professional life. This year, high-profile business leaders spoke about concurrently pursuing both profit and purpose.
This forum was extraordinary because I was awarded the inaugural INSEAD Young Alumni Achievement Award. This recognition is the highest honor a recent MBA grad can receive and is given to the student that exemplifies INSEAD’s mission of using “Business as a Force for Good.
The forum highlighted that large companies and start-ups benefit greatly from collaboration. As large companies aim to grow profits and deliver societal progress, a growing body of empirical evidence shows that partnerships are key for scaling impact. Large corporations have the resources and network, while impact start-ups have the entrepreneurial passion to fulfill the mission and the willingness to sacrifice to change lives.
Partnerships can speed up a large corporate’s initiatives because a start-up’s core expertise is concentrated on one business line. A lean team allows for a lower cost-structure, the empathy to pinpoint market preferences and the agility to adapt services. Focused branding properly communicates value proposition to customers. And impact entrepreneurs are able to inspire and motivate stakeholders to move as one.
The mind-set of teamwork and cooperation has shaped the way I do business.
PeoplePods Philippines, Carmelray Group formalize partnership
Many factory workers at industrial parks migrate from other provinces to Batangas and Laguna for safe employment. Because of housing shortages in towns surrounding industrial parks, workers pay high rent that is accelerating faster than in Metro Manila. Workers have stable employment yet live in unsafe and unsanitary spartan dwellings.
Seeing the dire need to improve living conditions of workers, Carmelray partnered with PeoplePods to improve the lives of workers in Carmelray through dignified female dormitory communities. As pioneers in the industry, the coalition aims to showcase that sustainable change is possible when stakeholders act together.
Carmelray brings its resources, network and track record of business excellence. PeoplePods brings:
1. Timing. New building methodology can cut construction time in half so Carmelray workers can be housed immediately;
2. Agility. PeoplePods’ marketing and design team is responsive enough to immediately incorporate feedback to boost service quality; and
3. Focus on UN Sustainable Development Goals. We aim to go beyond decent facilities by providing a community focused on uplifting the dignity of women at the base of the pyramid.
PeoplePods manages dignified dorm communities for female factory workers. Our mission is to promote job creation, ensure a happier and healthier workforce, and improve the lives of our residents with safer, cleaner housing with more amenities. The design—done by the award-winning J+A Architects and a LEED-certified sustainability specialist from Gensler—focuses on promoting the livability and dignity of the community.
Key takeaway: Unity is as important to the Lopez Group as it is to PeoplePods
What I hope readers take away from this is that cooperation across and beyond Lopez Group companies and across departments is essential. Whether your department is big or small, is well-established or newly created, has seasoned professionals or energetic millennials, bringing the Lopez Group to the next stage of growth will depend on your ability to work with each other towards a common goal.
Dan Lopez Layug, CFA, founded PeoplePods which provides dignified and affordable dorms for minimum wage workers of Batangas industrial parks. PeoplePods was listed in the top “Social Enterprises to watch for in Asia in 2018” by DBS Bank (Singapore). The start-up won 1st Place at the 35th INSEAD Venture Competition (France) and the 2017 Kellogg Real Estate Competition (USA). For inquiries, contact us through www.peoplepods.co.
Layug holds a professional diploma in Building & Property Management from the College of Saint Benilde. He graduated from Georgetown University with undergraduate degrees in Finance and Chinese Studies and from an INSEAD MBA where he was recognized as exemplifying the school’s vision of using “Business as a Force for Good.” (Story/Photos by: Dan Layug)
Seated, l-r: Joser Santos, Charrie Yulo-Ng, Dan Layug and Gad Chusenfu; Standing, l-r: Rickie Sarque, Peddy Palomar, Chito Zaldarriaga, Angela Yulo-Ng and Ana de Lara