Values-Driven Business

Everything we do in life should have a clear purpose, and we should regularly ask the question, ‘Why am I doing this?’, or more simply put, ‘Why?’. Many, if not all of us, ask themselves the question, ‘What am I doing here?” or ‘What is the purpose of life?’

Finding one’s purpose in life is key to finding true happiness, and one cannot be truly happy if one spends 8 hours a day doing something he or she is not truly passionate about. Work and the individual self cannot be considered as two separate spheres. Aligning our life and work purpose is crucial for our general wellbeing.

The question ‘Why?’ is of extreme importance when deciding to start a new business. One cannot simply decide to start a business without knowing the reason behind setting it up in the first place.

It is the responsibility of companies to ensure that their existential purpose goes beyond the bottom line, and it is also the responsibility of employees, who owe it to themselves, to work for companies which have a purpose that is aligned with their own.

The first discussion we had before setting up Seed Consultany was exactly this – what is going to be Seed’s purpose and is this purpose in line with our own existential selves? Our intention was to build a company which, as daunting and cliché as it sounds, makes the world a better place. On a micro level we aim at making everyone at Seed’s day that little bit better – whether this involves cultivating an atmosphere of teamwork, celebrating success and learning from failures together, and simply providing overall support and understanding to anyone having a hard day. Our aim is to continue to build a company where people are passionate about their job and happy to come to work on a daily basis – where people are not counting the hours left until the weekend.

Flexibility in the time and location of work plays an extremely important role in all of this. Whilst everyone should work a fixed set of hours per week, where those hours are worked and at what time is completely up to the employee. Being able to fit our work schedule into our life schedule, and not vice-versa, is an important element in ensuring the well-being of our employees, and that includes us, the founders. We are interested in productivity and the quality of work produced, and if someone wanted to work on a job at a coffee shop at 11pm, that is totally fine by us.

`We want to help our employees achieve success whatever that success may be. I recently read a book where the author, who was a business owner, stated that he would go so far as to help an employee set up a competing business. This is exactly what every company should strive towards – helping employees achieve whatever it is they aspire to, even if this means setting up a competing company.

As with any relationship, trust is key. We are a group of individuals who trust each other and have open and honest discussions with one another – without this, a company cannot move, grow and flourish.

We are also focussed on the wider community; this includes assisting other start-ups and also reducing our carbon footprint. We will ensure that our offices are free from any single-use plastic and are as paperless as possible.

The goal, whether for a business or an individual, should be to ensure we leave this world a better place than we found it.


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Nicky Gouder

Nicky is a Founding Partner at Seed Consultancy focusing on Tax, Corporate and Private Clients. Advising both corporate clients and High Net Worth Individuals & families, Nicky is a leading international tax expert in Malta. He has advised and structured a number of international structures and transactions. He continues to advise a number of clients with family planning issues and also businesses restructuring programmes with a focus on both tax and change management particularly in relation to corporate culture, processes and the creation of long-term value to shareholders. He also has extensive expertise in investment migration, advising clients on residency and citizenship opportunities in Malta and beyond. A regular commentator and speaker at international tax conferences, he has lectured in Advanced Taxation for the ACCA and is a member of the Society of Trust and Estate Practitioners (STEP) and the Investment Migration Council (IMC).