Scott Cathcart

Entrepreneur | Impact Investor | Triathlete

How to Balance Profit and Purpose at your Business

Today, business leaders are tasked with a very lofty goal that did not exist at this level even one decade ago. As changes in the workforce gradually move from individual desires to global sustainability, business owners must respond to popular demand. Previous generations argued for initiatives such as pension plans, paid time off, and salary equality within the workplace. Millennials and other current members of the workforce want something more

 

Environmental Factors

Environmental efforts such as recycling and energy-efficient appliances have already made great strides. For more than three decades, concern for the environment has remained at the forefront of business concerns. Virtually every business organization promotes green design or other sustainable initiatives in the workplace. Over time, small changes like motion sensor lights and hands-free restroom features have become expected staples in office spaces across all industries. Consumers follow in the path of business enterprises that show concern for specific environmental, political, and social agendas. 

 

Purpose Driven Business

Contemporary employees expect the organization they work for to have an admirable mission statement. Likewise, progressive business leaders and strategic planners are always on the lookout for current trends and cause to support. In addition to environmental causes that have already caught on, business leaders search for a purpose that employees will support in various ways. Organizational fundraisers, time off for volunteer events, and other incentives keep employees engaged in the cause and committed to a larger purpose. 

 

Profit Meets Purpose

Business efforts focused on a greater purpose must be able to generate revenue to stay afloat. Businesses who champion a favorable cause in the public eye get to reap the benefits of increased exposure to potential customers. However, there is also a risk for business enterprises that align with a specific cause or group. There is also a group of protestors for every group of supporters that rally around their favorite charitable event. Business leaders must be cautious not to alienate their existing customer base or detract newcomers based on their social or political affiliations. Brand awareness and loyalty are relatively fickle and must be carefully balanced to avoid unintended fallout.

 

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