Companies might think throwing money at non-profits looks good, but do they really care? It's time for businesses to inspire their employees to take real action—also a simple formula for growth and retention.
What makes a policy or a politician pro business? Lower minimum wage, weaken OSHA, cut corporate taxes. These are pro-factory policies, that make it easier for the factory to be more efficient, to have more power over workers, and to generate short-term profits. But "business" is no longer the same as "factory."
It's no secret global commerce is stuck in the doldrums. Worldwide,
economies are expected to average 3.5% growth over the next few years,
compared with the 4.7% clip enjoyed from 2003 to 2008. Developed
economies will do well to muster 2%. So you might think a conference
obsessed with global trends would be something of a downer, but if
anyone can find an upside it's the 4,000 VP-and-above business leaders
and all-star speakers converging at the WBF in New York to talk about
the future of business.
Goldman Sachs is the smartest, toughest, most aggressive, most powerful player in the world: They have the most powerful political connections. They have the most competitive culture. They make the most money. They win more than almost anybody else. They are the biggest dog in the world. In other words, you could think about Goldman Sachs the way most of the world thinks of the United States.
We stand at the cusp of a significant paradigm shift.
We have been building towards a transformational tipping point, where natural capital will eventually be valued alongside financial capital. While progress has been steady and promising for the last ten years, the widespread fundamental change we've been hoping for still lies ahead.
Several months ago, I was browsing through a bookstore in
Seattle looking for something to read on my flight back across the
country.After having spent eight hours
on stage working to keep a mental step ahead of 250 smart executives, I was
really looking for something mindless. Perhaps a murder mystery or maybe even
something from the vampire genre, which seems to be expanding beyond all
logical propositions these days.