I have been saying that if your business does not deliver genuine value to all stakeholders, then you have no business being in business. If you find that you have a great need to implement some sort of Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) or Corporate Responsibility (CR) policy, then the very nature of your business should be called into question, whether it is indeed delivering great and genuine value to all stakeholders.
A value-based business does not simply seek profits. It seeks to deliver goods and/ or services that people actually need. These may either be existing or new needs. An example of a business meeting an existing need would be when the paperclip was invented. It addressed the need for easily and inexpensively clipping loose sheets of paper together temporarily without having to use a stapler. A new need could be created by supplying something hitherto unheard-of, such as email and perhaps social media. Nobody asked for them, but they suddenly appeared and everyone uses them now. In fact, such things actually do address needs that are perhaps more fundamental, like wanting to stay connected or wanting to enlarge one’s circle of friends. Email and social media then became means to fulfill at least some aspects of the need to stay connected and enlarge one’s circle of friends.
A value-based business not only serves its stakeholders by providing genuinely valuable goods, services and so forth. It actually actively contributes to society by being a “Great Place To Work”. People who work in that business become maximized as human beings, and they spread the attitude of making others “Greater Than Yourself” wherever they go, at work and play. If you work for an organization that is a value-based business, you ought to leave it a changed person for the better, and you ought to have helped influence your co-workers and others to become better also.
So, as we enter 2013, ask yourself: How am I adding value to people wherever I am? It is that which will make you a value-based business person! And if you’re not in business, the same principle applies to you, too! Have a fruitful 2013!