In today’s “internet speed” business world, almost every organization seeks to get ahead of the competition by becoming more innovative, adaptive and agile. There’s constant pressure to streamline and optimize processes and achieve economies of scale. Along the way, process owners and IT executives must decide whether to cut corners for quick returns, or take the opportunity to both do it right and do the right thing.
Aligning doin’ it right for the company with doing the right thing for society
Doing it right can yield a number of corporate benefits: improved customer satisfaction, increased revenue and profits, improved investor returns, alignment with corporate strategies, etc. Doing the right thing also means environmental responsibility through better waste control, conservation of natural resources, and placing human rights before corporate profits. Contrary to conventional business wisdom, doing it right for the company and going the right thing for the society can both benefit the community and lead to higher profits. Changing the way business sees the relationship between achieving profits and solving social problems can have a dramatic impact on everyone’s wellbeing.
6 ways to profit from solving social problems
Conventional thought dictates that business profits often come at the expense of social benefit. The reality is that, done right, businesses can profit handsomely from solving social problems by:
- Opening new markets that generate revenue growth
- Being more productive
- Having efficient processes
- Avoiding accidents that are expensive, cause pain and interrupt lives and business
- Not trading off between social progress and economic efficiency
- Reducing costs to recruit and retain social-minded top talent
Some forward-looking businesses already employ a balanced scorecard as a tool to monitor their business progress in a holistic manner, often with consideration to both economic value and corporate social responsibility.
Total Value = Fn(Social Value, Economic Value)
Scarcity of resources and the resulting initiatives to achieve scale increase business economic value. This imperative also represents an opportunity to increase social value if businesses accept their role as contributors to social solutions. Following the motto “doin’ it right while doing the right thing”, businesses can become an agents of change to solve massive social problems. Consider this exciting perspective the next time you’re re-engineering your business processes. After all, nobody wants to be doin’ it right on the wrong side of town.