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The Evolution of a Corporate Idealist: When Girl Meets Oil (English Edition)

The Evolution of a Corporate Idealist: When Girl Meets Oil (English Edition) [Kindle Edition]

Christine Bader

Kindle-Preis: EUR 10,98 Inkl. MwSt. und kostenloser drahtloser Lieferung über Amazon Whispernet

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"The Evolution of a Corporate Idealist is a quick read, effortlessly gulped during a long airplane flight. The writing is clear and concise, and if the book doesn't leave one convinced that every multinational has suddenly developed a guiding conscience, it does offer some encouragement that many are on the way." --The New York Times "Christine Bader's The Evolution of a Corporate Idealist paints a vivid picture of the changing world of business, the rise of sustainability as a value in many companies, and the author's own awakening to the complexity of corporate responsibility. Written as a lively and compelling narrative, the book goes beyond recounting Bader's ups and downs in a decade at BP to offer deep insight into the central importance of morality in any job, company, or life." --Dan Esty, Hillhouse Professor, Yale University; author, Green to Gold "Business must be part of the solution to the complex challenges facing our planet. This requires authentic and committed leaders at all levels within a company working together to help make this a reality. In The Evolution of a Corporate Idealist: When Girl Meets Oil, Christine Bader gives us a firsthand account of what it takes to get this right and provides some salutary lessons about what it means when companies get it wrong." --Paul Polman, CEO, Unilever "Companies increasingly recognize that they have a legitimate interest in respecting human rights. Christine Bader has been on the front lines of both setting and implementing human rights standards for business, and provides an engaging narrative of what it takes to ensure that human rights are a reality for all." --Mary Robinson, former president of Ireland; former United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights "With insight and humor, Christine Bader sheds light on the inner workings of multinational business. The Evolution of a Corporate Idealist is a must-read for all of us who care about ensuring that ethics and morality have their rightful place on the business agenda." --William H. Donaldson, 27th chairman, U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission; co-founder, former chairman and CEO, Donaldson, Lufkin & Jenrette "For all those who have seen what multinational corporations are doing and wondered, "What were they thinking?" -- read this book! Bader takes us deep inside big business, past the slick P.R. and newspaper headlines. Whether you resonate with the title "Corporate Idealist" or think it's an oxymoron, this book is a fascinating read. Love Big Oil or hate it, you'll never look at it the same." --Annie Leonard, Founder, The Story of Stuff Project "Christine Bader writes as she is: genuine, funny, compassionate, on a constant search for truth and impact. The Evolution of a Corporate Idealist: When Girl Meets Oil is a unique and valuable contribution to one of the greatest challenges of the modern era: how to leverage the creativity and drive of business to achieve a just and sustainable world." --Aron Cramer, President and CEO, BSR (Business for Social Responsibility) "Too many companies -- and the investors and consumers that support them -- still take a short-term, narrow view that is threatening our planet; the 'sustainability' movement has often felt like one step forward, two steps back. In The Evolution of a Corporate Idealist: When Girl Meets Oil, Christine Bader gives us an insider's perspective on why that is the case. I relate to her struggle between optimism and pessimism, and suspect many others will too." --Jeffrey Hollender, founder and former CEO, Seventh Generation "The Evolution of a Corporate Idealist is a deeply personal reflection on a vastly neglected subject: the hopes and successes, disappointments and disillusionments, of corporate social responsibility practitioners in global companies. Christine Bader recounts her own journey, starting with infatuation and fulfillment, to feeling jilted, experimenting with taming capitalism through the United Nations, and ending up back in the private sector, a bit bruised but considerably wiser. This makes for an eminently readable introduction to the bourgeoning field of corporate social responsibility." --John G. Ruggie, Harvard University; former U.N. special representative for business & human rights "Girl meets Big Oil, Big Oil breaks girl's heart. So far, so predictable. But Christine Bader's extraordinary, warts-and-all memoir reveals what happens when idealism and business converge in both the heart and the mind." --John Elkington, co-founder of Environmental Data Services (ENDS), SustainAbility and Volans; co-author, The Power of Unreasonable People.


There is an invisible army of people deep inside the world’s biggest and best-known companies, pushing for safer and more responsible practices. They are trying to prevent the next Rana Plaza factory collapse, the next Deepwater Horizon explosion, the next Foxconn labor abuses. Obviously, they don’t always succeed.

Christine Bader was one of those people. She loved BP and then-CEO John Browne’s lofty rhetoric on climate change and human rights—until a string of fatal BP accidents, Browne’s abrupt resignation under a cloud of scandal, and the start of Tony Hayward’s tenure as chief executive, which would end with the Deepwater Horizon disaster.

Bader’s story of working deep inside the belly of the beast is unique in its details, but not in its themes: of feeling like an outsider both inside the company (accused of being a closet activist) and out (assumed to be a corporate shill); of getting mixed messages from senior management; of being frustrated with corporate life but committed to pushing for change from within.

The Evolution of a Corporate Idealist: Girl Meets Oil is based on Bader’s experience with BP and then with a United Nations effort to prevent and address human rights abuses linked to business. Using her story as its skeleton, Bader weaves in the stories of other “Corporate Idealists” working inside some of the world's biggest and best-known companies.


  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • Dateigröße: 1584 KB
  • Seitenzahl der Print-Ausgabe: 266 Seiten
  • Verlag: Bibliomotion, Inc. (25. März 2014)
  • Verkauf durch: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Sprache: Englisch
  • ASIN: B00I2ZW46S
  • Text-to-Speech (Vorlesemodus): Aktiviert
  • X-Ray:
  • Amazon Bestseller-Rang: #193.822 Bezahlt in Kindle-Shop (Siehe Top 100 Bezahlt in Kindle-Shop)

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Die hilfreichsten Kundenrezensionen auf (beta) 4.8 von 5 Sternen  55 Rezensionen
7 von 8 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
5.0 von 5 Sternen "It was the best of times, it was the worst of times": A tale of two companies and more, much more 10. März 2014
Von Robert Morris - Veröffentlicht auf
Format:Gebundene Ausgabe
First of all, many people incorrectly believe that an idealist is necessarily "out of touch with reality" when, in fact, idealism and realism are not mutually exclusive. The greatest leaders throughout history were values-driven and attracted followers precisely because of a vision that, without exception, was based on ideals. In this remarkable book, Christine Bader focuses on her nine-year period employment by BP (1999-2008) during which she learned - and now shares -- valuable lessons that contributed to her personal growth as well as her professional development. Hers is indeed a journey of discovery.

Providing some background information is in order. As she explains: "I fell in love with that BP. And BP loved me back, giving me the opportunity to live in Indonesia, working on social issues around a remote gas field; then China, ensuring worker and community safety for a chemicals joint venture; then in the United Kingdom again, collaborating with colleagues around the world to better understand and support human rights.

"BP was paying me to help the people living around its projects, because that in turn would help its business. I was living the cliché of doing well and doing good. and I was completely smitten. My beloved company even let me create a pro bono project advising a United Nations initiative to clarify business's responsibilities for human rights, aimed at creating international policy to help even more people."

These brief excerpts describe "the good BP" during Bader's "best of times." And then Big Oil broke her heart, "the worst of times." She left BP to work on the U.N. project full-time. Some of the most interesting material in her narrative provides stories and reflections from other Corporate Idealists, noting that "while my story may be unique in its details, it is not in its themes" nor in the nature and extent resistance that Corporate Idealists encounter.

These are among the dozens of business subjects and issues of special interest and value to me, also listed to indicate the scope of Bader's coverage.

o Papua: A culturally sensitive setting (Pages 2-6)
o John Browne: A Different Brand of Oilman (6-9)
o Security and Human Rights (20-29)
o On [Bader's] Personal Front (37-42)
o An overview of Bader's years in China (42-72)
o Human Rights and BP Values (78-89)
o A Global Debate (92-96)
o End of the John Browne Era (98-104)
o The Business and Human Rights Debate (109-115)
o Protect, Respect and Remedy (116-122)
o The End of the Beginning (134-137)
o The Power of Normative Standards (137-140)
o BP's "Perfect Storm" (164-166)
o Supping with the Devil: Kofi Anan with Phil Knight (179-186)
o A Sorting Function (201-208)

While re-reading The Revolution of a Corporate Idealist, I was again reminded of the fact that many of the companies annually ranked as the most highly admired and best to work for are also among those annually ranked as most profitable and having the greatest cap value in their industry segment. That is emphatically NOT a coincidence. Enduring principles and sustainable profits are not mutually exclusive. On the contrary, they are [begin italics] interdependent [end italics].

After all of the best and worst of times that Christine Bader endured, her basic values remain intact but she has also developed what Ernest Hemingway once characterized as a built-in, shock-proof crap detector. When concluding her book, she observes, "The Corporate Idealist community sees both the challenges and potential of big business. We realize that we can't save the world -- we can even save every finger and toe. We can expound upon but not fully explain the disasters of our companies and industries, which is deeply unsatisfying to those who want simple answers and assurances. But we can nudge our companies toward a vision of a better future, one in which 'responsible business' and 'fair trade' are redundant, not novelties or oxymorons."

I hope that those who read this book -- especially those now preparing for a career in business or who have only recently embarked on one -- will become an active member of the Corporate Idealist community. There is so much important work yet to be done. As indicated earlier, I fervently believe -- as does Christine Bader -- that enduring principles and sustainable profits are not mutually exclusive. On the contrary, they are interdependent.
4 von 4 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
5.0 von 5 Sternen A valuable book by a global leader in human rights and business 23. März 2014
Von Alice Korngold - Veröffentlicht auf
Format:Gebundene Ausgabe|Verifizierter Kauf
A compelling read from one of the world's foremost experts on human rights and business, based on her personal experiences in both the NGO and corporate sectors. Christine Bader shares her story with keen insight--a story that will resonate with people in companies who seek to drive more responsible social and environmental practices in companies worldwide. Buy it and read'll be glad you did!
3 von 3 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
5.0 von 5 Sternen Corporate idealism requires belief, persistance, and deeply understandin skill 25. März 2014
Von Ted Lehmann - Veröffentlicht auf
Format:Kindle Edition
Evolution of a Corporate Idealist: When Girl Meets Oil by Christine Bader (Bibliomotion, 2014, 266 pages, Kindle price $10.99) is an important book for several populations to read. It is aimed quite accurately at those people who wish to work inside corporations to make them more ethically, morally, and socially responsive to organizations, those who would view multi-national corporations as rapacious, greedy organizations paying no heed to the social, economic, environmental, or safety needs of workers, and the media which publicize conditions and disasters with little attention to context or the challenges presented. Bader succeeds in meeting these goals by exploring her own doubts and fears, accomplishments and failures as she works in corporate, United Nations, and non-governmental organizations to make a difference in the areas of corporate responsibility and means of communication.

After earning her undergraduate degree at Amherst College, where she was on the squash team, and an MBA at Yale, Bader joined BP, helping direct projects involving human rights and community safety. Her earliest assignment was to the Tangguh region in Papua, New Guinea (Indonesia) where BP was seeking to develop a huge Liquified Natural Gas project in a remote, undeveloped area of the country. Based on the company's and her knowledge of previous difficulties encountered by both BP and other extractive corporations, particularly Exxon/Mobil's disastrous and expensive incident's in Aceh Province, BP, under the leadership of Chairman John Browne became committed to finding a different road, which would avoid the environmental damage and social unrest often created by such large projects. Achieving these goals involved developing new, sensitive approaches to communicating with indigenous populations as well as unstable governments and corrupt officials to gain their willing cooperation. Such negotiations require that all stakeholders be thoroughly involved in the process of development, coming willingly on board. In what is often called “the paradox of plenty,” newly found riches often lead to the destruction of the moral and cultural life of local people and governments leading to resistance and huge cost in security and lives.

Along the road to seeking solutions to such problems, Bader learns negotiating and interpersonal skills as well as cultural sensitivity that helps BP avoid the disruption often caused by development and mulit-nationals' not heeding the local power structure or communities while dealing mostly with the government at the top. Bader suggests that for both business and moral reasons, corporate willingness to take stands by making the correct moral choices is almost always the right thing to do. It is essential, she says, for corporations to avoid complicity in human rights abuses. The risks, ranging from causing disruptions in family life to excusing accidental death as a cost of doing business can only increase resistance to a company's presence. Often, human rights specialists wish to publish transparent reports about local and world issues while company lawyers hold back, fearing publicity and liability, always taking “worst case scenarios.” Bader tags Reebock, Nike, BP, and Apple as leaders in helping set global supply chain standards despite the adverse publicity they have received. Read the remainder of this review on my blog.
3 von 3 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
5.0 von 5 Sternen Changing the World, One Company at a Time 25. März 2014
Von E. Okobi - Veröffentlicht auf
Format:Gebundene Ausgabe
If you have ever considered the occasionally heart-breaking, intermittently maligned, mostly fascinating life of working within companies to create the change you wish to see in the world, BUY THIS BOOK.

I have been a Corporate Idealist for over a decade, after a peripatetic meander through law, business and the nonprofit world, and I have never read any book that quite captured the agony and the ecstasy of this calling. Most books about social responsibility (and it’s not a big library. I have them all. . .) are about the work itself, or about tactics.

Girl Meets Oil is about what it is actually like to be within the belly of the beast. It’s about being perceived as compromised or hypocritical by NGOs, while being barely tolerated as that bleeding heart pain in the ass at work. Of course, the work is not all or even mostly bad—Girl Meets Oil talks about those moments of grace, of realizing that the work you have been doing has actually made a difference, for one person, or for millions of people.

For those of us who do this work, this will be like that Roberta Flack song—Ms. Bader is strumming your pain with her fingers, singing your life with her words. It is an instant classic, and notable for being the first of its kind. And if you are still in school, and considering what this life and work are like, Ms Bader is the perfect guide. I am so often asked “What is it like? What is the right career path if I want to do corporate social responsibility, or human rights at a company?” The beauty of this book is that Ms. Bader draws from so many stories while sharing her own, and after reading, one realizes that there is no set path, that being a Corporate Idealist requires so many different competencies and subject matter backgrounds, and that there are many opportunities to change the world while wearing a corporate logo on your chest.
3 von 3 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
5.0 von 5 Sternen The good, the bad and the ugly - corporate idealist Christine Bader has seen it all 27. März 2014
Von Peggy Warner - Veröffentlicht auf
Format:Gebundene Ausgabe|Verifizierter Kauf
Do you need to check your ideals at the door when you start working for a large corporation? In her new book, The Evolution of a Corporate Idealist: Girl Meets Oil, Christine Bader answers that question with a firm NO! But, she warns, don’t expect it to be easy.

Ms. Bader started at BP Oil as a starry-eyed business school graduate expecting to change the world. Her book provides a balanced account of both failures and hard-won successes as she struggled to promote corporate responsibility.

Her writing style is light and breezy, as she interweaves her BP experience with the experiences of other corporate idealists and the lessons she learned. But her message is deadly serious. In light of events like the Deepwater Horizon oil spill and the Rana Plaza Factory collapse in Bangladesh, the lessons in Ms. Bader’s book, and the ideals it embraces, have never been more important.
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