It’s Time For The Gambling Industry To Kick Start Its Social-Purpose Journey

What happens when an organization begins its social purpose journey? The British Columbia Lottery Corporation (BCLC) has embarked on that path. Find out how it’s working from its leader, Peter ter Weeme (l.).

It’s Time For The Gambling Industry To Kick Start Its Social-Purpose Journey

More organizations are turning their attention to the idea of social purpose and wondering what it means for them. BCLC recently kick started its Social-Purpose journey. We’re starting to change the way we do business to better align with our new social purpose: We exist to generate win-wins for the greater good.

While gambling may be viewed as a polarizing activity, BCLC is committed to supporting players with fun and safe entertainment—but beyond that, we want to be a broader force for good in society.

Canada’s first-ever Purpose in Business Week and the Propelling Purpose Summit on November 17 and 18, 2021 are paving the road to Canada’s purpose-led economy. Business, government and thought leaders will convene to create a roadmap to accelerate the purpose economy and mainstream social purpose in business, through six critical levers: corporate leadership, post-secondary education, trade and professional associations, ecosystem enablement, public policy and social-purpose procurement.

As defined by the United Way’s Social Purpose Institute, social purpose is an emerging trend in business whereby companies define their reason for being in societal terms. This process enables organizations to establish a competitive advantage and create new opportunities for maximizing profits and building shareholder value. Social-purpose companies exist to create a better world through their core business operations. Their business growth propels, powers and contributes positively in perpetuity to society and the environment.

The business case for all organizations, including those in the gambling and entertainment industry, to pivot to purpose includes better employee retention and attraction. Recent research by Edelman points out that the current employee-value proposition not only includes traditional pay, career advancement and a newer focus on employee well-being but “an employer commitment to act for good on society’s biggest challenges.”

For BCLC, this means looking at our products and services through a different lens: Do they reflect the diversity of our players? Can we create more positive social impacts in the everyday decisions we make? Do the vendors we select have the same commitment to a defined social purpose that they are acting on?

There are countless business applications to social purpose that, once adopted, can impact almost every area of an organization’s day-to-day decisions; whether it’s the employee experience or decisions related to operations, facilities, stakeholder relations or community sponsorships. With purpose driving decision-making, the end result is a net benefit for everyone—inside and outside an organization.

There’s no better time for the gambling industry to up its social purpose game—and BCLC is ready to lead the charge.

Related link: Harvard Business Review, Creating a Meaningful Corporate Purpose, Hubert Joly, former chairman and CEO of Best Buy.

Articles by Author: Peter ter Weeme

Peter ter Weeme is the chief social purpose officer and vice president, player experience for the British Columbia Lottery Corporation (BCLC)