Berkeley Haas Case Series

Case Information

Young Guru Academy: Culture and the Return on Investment
Raube, Kristiana , and Jeanne Godleski
Publication date: 4/1/2018, pages 1-21

This case focuses on the Young Guru Academy (YGA), a non-profit organization based in Istanbul, Turkey, that emphasizes the importance of building "leaders with selfless confidence" and establishing a "high trust" culture for these pathfinders to thrive as a model to achieve long-term and sustainable social innovation. The organization’s underlying cultural philosophy takes the position that individuals who are most effective at inspiring positive change are often those who have both high levels of traditional business competencies and a high degree of socially-oriented skills -- or, in short, "double-winged" leaders. Within organizations like YGA that focuses on social innovation to solve society’s ills, these "double-winged" leaders are the "equivalent of being a double-winged bird in organizations, to have a unique model that creates economic value around the world, with technology-based innovations on one wing, and with social development and cultural transformation without the pursuit of profit on the other. In creating an environment for these "double-winged" leaders to thrive, there are three key components that build a culture for blending innovation with a technology approach that creates value: selfless confidence, a climate of trust, and social innovation purpose.

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