Making Money and Doing Good Can Coexist
About a year ago, I joined a group called Conscious Capitalism. I liked their belief that the “motivation of business should be more than simply to generate profits.” The group advocates that companies and their leaders should have a higher purpose and that they can be a force for social good. That means business leaders should treat their employees well. They should care about the communities in which they operate. They should take care of the environment and they should give back to society whenever possible. This doesn’t mean that Conscious Capitalism believes in a business utopia but they are striving for an environment where business can be the solution rather than the problem.
And why am I writing about this? Because I think that the time could not be better for a business leader to step up and help to fill the ethical void that exists within our current governmental leadership. While the EPA is pushing to roll back environmental regulations, wouldn’t it be amazing if industries would instead advocate for environmental action and use that stance to differentiate their business? In fact, most studies show that consumers are putting their money where their conscience is and supporting companies that are doing positive things. So, business could do the right thing for the world and be doing good for their bottom line at the same time.
Unfortunately, I don’t think that most of this positive change will come from huge corporations unless their shareholders start demanding it. Rather, I think that smaller and more agile organizations are going to push the envelope and bring their larger competitors along with them because they eventually won’t have a choice. Think of Tesla and how that has pushed the other auto companies to produce more electric cars. Think of all of the organic and vegan food companies that are cutting into the market share of the large packaged goods companies and forcing them to bring out healthier alternatives. Then there are companies like Credo Mobile that give a percentage of sales to progressive causes. Instead of trying to dominate the world like many of the other cell phone companies, they are trying to change the world.
Capitalism and doing the right thing, can coexist. If you believe that business can do better, then join the movement!
Conscious Capitalism www.consciouscapitalism.org/
LA chapter Conscious Capitalism www.consciouscapitalismla.org/
B corps www.bcorporation.net
Social Enterprise Alliance www.socialenterprise.us