GI Quo Vadis joined with other changemakers at Impact Hub Global’s Berlin Week 2017. During the weeklong event, Impact Hub curated three “gathering opportunities” for visitors, each one tailored to a specific audience. Their Unlikely Allies gathering brought together more than 150 innovators, tackling such pervasive issues as climate change, smart cities, and education.
Most people wouldn’t think to look to a real estate company when trying to solve global problems, but GI Quo Vadis is not your typical real estate company. It has been receiving considerable attention for its successful projects that have helped to rejuvenate neighbourhoods and provide growth and opportunity for entrepreneurs and communities.
Unlikely Allies, as the name suggests, emphasized the need for community and cross-sector collaboration in creating positive change at any scale, local or global. For innovators to succeed, they will need to partner with the right people. Often, it will not be immediately obvious who those people are. GI Quo Vadis President Natalie Voland, whose company is a B Corporation, knows all too well the need for collaboration in conducting socially responsible business practices. Her goal was to share her strategies for using real estate as a force for good.
B Corporations are a relatively new concept, but emphasize a triple bottom line of people, planet, and profits. While not every business will become a B Corporation, more responsible business practices can be applied across a variety of unlikely industries. For most people, real estate does not immediately come to mind when thinking of altruistic business ventures. That’s something Voland hopes to change.
GI Quo Vadis has often made ties in unlikely places, including universities, the McConnell Foundation, Impact Hub, and other B Corporations. Voland mentions some of Impact Hub’s impressive supporters, like the World Wildlife Fund for Nature (WWF).
“Every decision, every contact, every conversation deepens our opportunity for connectivity,” Voland says, noting Impact Hub’s ability to turn ideas into action. “The linking factor between all of this is the human desire to make an impact and create a legacy that we have left today better than yesterday.”
She admits the work can be gruelling, but the promise is worth the effort. “Every decision makes an impact. It takes one drop of water to make a waterfall.”