Is it possible to serve society & shareholders interests at the same time?

I came across this remarkable story of the turnaround of Denmark’s biggest energy company. They moved from Black to Green energy,during a crisis&are one of Europe’s most valuable energy companies.

In 2012, Danish Oil & Natural Gas, slid into financial crisis as the price of natural gas plunged by 90%. The board hired Henrik Poulsen, as the new CEO. Some leaders would go into a crisis-management mode, lay off workers till prices recover, Poulsen recognized the moment as an opportunity for fundamental change.

“We saw the need to build an entirely new company,” says Poulsen. He renamed the firm Ørsted. “It had to be a radical transformation; we needed to build a new core business & find new areas of sustainable growth. We looked at the shift to combat climate change& we became one of the few companies to wholeheartedly make this profound decision, to be one of the first to go from black to green energy.”

Today, Ørsted is the leader in offshore wind power.The transformation has propelled the company’s market value to US$30 billion.

The lesson for me is: it is possible to serve both interests of shareholders &society; you just need to have the vision &the determination to see it through

What are your lessons?