Brands that are socially conscious outperform brands that cater to Wall Street's quarterly expectations. Being mission-driven, making mission-driven decisions and creating an employee-empowering culture lead to far above average financial results.
There are three concepts that socially conscious brands should consider:
- Conscious Capitalism - this recognizes some of the dysfunctional byproducts of modern capitalism - lack of equality and opportunity, worker exploitation, growing disparity of wealth and income, corporate moral and ethical irresponsibility (such as wholesale export of critical manufacturing jobs, complicated corporate maneuvers to avoid taxes and excessive participation and influence on the political process and policy making) and ecological disasters.There are the four components of conscious capitalism: (1) having a higher purpose, (2) sustainable integration of all stakeholders - employees, customers, vendors, business partners, the communities in which they are embedded, the environment and shareholders, (3) conscious leadership by people who are ethical and are willing mitigate the greed impulse to achieve long-term value for all stakeholders and (4) sustaining a culture of trust, accountability, caring, transparency, integrity, learning and egalitarianism.
- Triple Bottom Line Companies - this is a concept that broadens a business' focus on the financial bottom line to include social and environmental considerations. A triple bottom line measures a company's degree of social responsibility, its economic value and its environmental impact.
- B Corporations - In the United States, a benefit corporation is a type of for-profit corporate entity, authorized by 33 U.S. states and the District of Columbia that includes positive impact on society, workers, the community and the environment in addition to profit as its legally defined goals, in that the definition of "best interest of the corporation" is specified to include those impacts. Traditional C Corporation law does not specify the definition of "best interest of the corporation" which has led to profit motivations being used as the main driver for best interests during the period of late capitalism.
Here are some interesting books on the subject:
- Rajendra Sisodia
- Firms of Endearment: How World-Class Companies Profit from Passion and Purpose by Raj Sisodia, Jag Sheath and David B. Wolfe
- Everybody Matters: The Extraordinary Power of Caring for Your People Like Family by Bob Chapman and Raj Sisodia
- The Triple Bottom Line: How Today's Best-Run Companies Are Achieving Economic, Social and Environmental Success - and How You Can Too by Andrew Savitz
- The Power of Principles: Ethics for the New Corporate Culture by William J. Byron
- Start with Why: How Great Leaders Inspire Everyone to Take Action by Simon Sinek
- Co-opetition by Adam M. Brandenburger and Barry J. Nalebuff
Here are some of my other posts on this: