Whether business leaders arrive at social responsibility for strategic reasons - good brand association, good lead generation, new partners - or due to personal enlightenment, no one should care. I love the trend!
Eckard Tolle, best-selling author, argues that we are in a new age of personal enlightenment (Great quotes from Tolle). Naturally, business enlightenment will follow, and in fact, is following. All around the business community we are seeing evidence of “philanthropreneurs”. It is the social entrepreneur driving a new socially responsible non-profit venture, or it’s Warren Buffet choosing to distribute his entire gazillion dollar estate to the Bill and Melinda Gates foundation. What is driving this? Eckard would argue that more and more, people are spiritually aware. It may be that people are finally listening to the life lessons of the dying. In the end, no “thing” really matters. It is not about the acquisition of things. It is about utilizing excellence in profit making, to help level the life experience playing field for all. Wealth can still be energizing. The drive to uber business goals worthwhile.
Paul Lemberg writes….
“Businesses can be powerful models for the larger community. They are able to demonstrate the value of such things as innovation, dedication and responsiveness to customers, risk-taking, process and systems innovations, financial practicalities, and teamwork.
Strategic philanthropy can be a core element of how you operate your business and see yourself as a entrepreneur. It can functionally help you to refine the values and purpose of your business, in a manner, which not only distinguishes you from your competitors, but also contributes to your bottom line while improving the quality and success of virtually every aspect of your staff, your systems and your overall business.”
Add the emerging millenials (generation Y) to this growing pool of more enlightened Business Leaders, and you have a new powerful force in philanthropy. By deploying profits and energy for the greater good, capitalism can replace the oft associated greed tag. We have some great emerging role models leading the way.