This week the final report of the research on agape within businesses was published. This research, titled: In de ogen van de ander. Een witboek voor agapè in een bedrijfsomgeving, was written by Prof Dr Harry Hummels.
This research shows us various family businesses, including Schijvens. The term agape stands for sincere attention for the other and the action directed towards the other deriving from the same. People are willing to help each other, without immediately receiving something in return. The research centres on the question to what degree businesses pay attention to the wellbeing of the other and the manner that they give substance to this.
At Schijvens we commit to the environment and the wellbeing of others. The textile industry is, after the oil industry, the most polluting industry in the world. We started thinking about a solution for this, where we can make a contribution towards the improvement of the world. This way we started producing circular company clothing in the course of which we recycle textile and mix this with recycled PET. Apart from the production of circular company clothing, we are also engaged in the wellbeing of the employees at the factories where we produce our clothing. We are affiliated with the Fair Wear Foundation and this year we were, once again, elected as LEADER. We pay the employees a living wage and provide for healthy working conditions at our factories. Most importantly, we produce a product that makes everybody happy. Not just us and the final users, but precisely also the people who make it.
The summary of the book
In the white papers In de ogen van de ander, Harry Hummels advocates agape within businesses, albeit that the lessons can equally be applied to the financial sector or the government. Agape is one of the four forms of love in Greek mythology. The concept refers to paying attention to the wellbeing of the other and practically giving substance to that. However, agape starts with listening to the other and hearing what he or she has to say. Despite the frequently heard conception that man is – merely – a rational being, practice teaches that managers and employees of businesses actually actively and sincerely stimulate the wellbeing of others. These Dutch-language white papers were made possible with the financial support of the Goldschmeding Foundation.
The complete research can be read here.
ECCE. (2019, 4 december). WITBOEK – In de ogen van de ander. Geraadpleegd op 13 december 2019, van https://sustainable-finance.nl/research/witboek-in-de-ogen-van-de-ander/