In many ways, Arizona has been leading the country with the concept of incorporating social good into business. Some of our local business owners were among the first to gain “B Corporation” certification when nonprofit B Lab initiated its licensing program. And, effective January 2015, Arizona pioneered a law that allowed businesses to incorporate as a “benefit corporation” — enabling them to specify a general public good as a central purpose in its articles of incorporation and thus giving their leadership legal standing against potential challenges by company stakeholders who may question the financial impact of decisions.
The history of “social good” in business can be traced back to the introduction of Corporate Social Responsibility. Born in the late 1950s, CSR’s early incarnation was widely viewed as a way for businesses to atone for their everyday sins. Fast forward 60 years, today’s practice of “social good” is more than a bolt-on corporate department comprised of a small team of passionate societal do-gooders. It’s a fundamental philosophy or mindset that is integrated into the fabric of the business. And make no mistake about it, businesses that focus on doing well and doing good are not allergic to profit. In fact, there’s growing evidence that businesses which practice Conscious Capitalism are outperforming their peers in every way, including the bottom line (see McKinsey’s Corporate Horizon Index report).
Today’s consumers are more informed than ever before and continue to vote with their wallets and choose businesses that align with their values. And today’s workforce is placing a high premium on working for an organization that exists for a purpose beyond just making money. If attracting the best talent and winning more customers/clients is a priority for your business, Conscious Capitalism is a common-sense framework that deserves your immediate attention.
The cover story on Conscious Capitalism that starts on page 26 gives a close-up look into several businesses in our community that have fully integrated the concept of “social good” into their operations. These are businesses in a variety of industries, and of different sizes. Some were founded on their social purpose; for others, it was an evolution. Their stories are compelling.
Also in this issue is a feature article on finance that looks at a business’s worth in greater depth than simply bank balances. Focusing in particular on small business, Susan Talbott discusses many different types of assets that comprise a business’s true valuation.
The speed of technological change strains legal and moral responses to keep up. Attorney Tamara Barkdoll discusses issues employers are currently dealing with in regard to the many “smart” devices available to their employees. Delegating is a subject covered in depth in another feature that goes into both the why and the how. Smaller articles look at innovative changes coming out of local and locally based businesses, B2B and B2C, in the magazine’s regular departments of Startups, Healthcare, Technology and more.
This November issue also includes the annually updated Lending Guide, a business owner’s resource for sources of business financing.
I am pleased to have helped bring you this November issue of In Business Magazine. Please enjoy the read.
Conscious Capitalism – Arizona Chapter
As the president of the Arizona Chapter of Conscious Capitalism, Brian Mohr is focused on helping the Arizona business community practice capitalism with both a long-term view and a stakeholder-centric orientation; a model of business that creates prosperity for all. Mohr is on the global board of trustees of Conscious Capitalism, Inc., a member of the board of directors of the Better Business Bureau of the Pacific Southwest, and anticipating the launch of his first book, Hiring on Purpose – How the Y Scouts Method is Revolutionizing the Search for Leaders.