I believe that one of the biggest and most important goals of a business should be to make the world a better place in one way or another. I don’t believe that businesses should be stealing from the poor to pay the rich or that only the people at the top make good money or that the only goal in business is to make money. If you’re only in it for the money it usually shows. Sometimes there are some good motives behind the most successful and cutthroat businesses, but usually they aren’t the first or second priorities.
But in not prioritizing the good of others as one of the highest, if not the highest, goals of your business you’re doing a disservice to everyone. Yes, a business needs to make money, otherwise it would be just a hobby, but the attitude about that money and the people that supply it to the business makes a difference.
Why? Because people are important and should not be discounted, avoided or ignored. Everyone has needs and when those needs aren’t met the world as a whole suffers. If more people had their basic needs met they would be able to focus on doing better at work, learning more to better themselves and doing what they could to make their part of the world a better place. That’s not to say that some of the richest people don’t donate and make a point of supporting others, some do.
So the question then becomes what can we do to make a difference? It starts with treating our employees and partners fairly and with dignity even if they’re several steps below us in the business hierarchy. It continues with pricing things fairly and providing quality goods and services. It concludes with making sure that the local communities are cared for and protected especially if you’re in businesses that cause health or other types of risks. But without the respect and dignity towards our fellow men we won’t get very far or get any more brownie points as a business.
“We think sometimes that poverty is only being hungry, naked and homeless. The poverty of being unwanted, unloved and uncared for is the greatest poverty. We must start in our own homes to remedy this kind of poverty.” Mother Teresa