Elevating humanity through business

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Dear Business Schools: Profits are Not the Point

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Why academia needs to stop pigeonholing capitalism

By Geoff Campbell and Aleksandra Corwin of Round Table Companies

 

Capitalism exploits workers. Capitalists are greedy. Capitalists destroy the environment. Or so say capitalism’s critics.

The litany of complaints about capitalism stretches to the horizon, ignoring the fact that capitalism has improved the lives of countless millions and serves as the single-most powerful force for good the world has ever seen.

Why the disconnect? Any business people worth their salt know that the essential ingredient to long-term success is balancing the needs of the entire stakeholder chain. Yet there continues to be a mismatch between the prevailing narrative about business (greedy pigs) and the reality we know to be synonymous with a truly successful business (value-creators for everyone the business touches).

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Responsible Banking

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How KeyBank brings consciousness to its industry

By Geoff Campbell and Aleksandra Corwin of Round Table Companies

 

Building on a long-standing commitment to responsible banking, KeyBank is a powerful example of how enlightened business practices align with higher profits—the central premise of Conscious Capitalism.

“Profit and consciousness are not polar opposites,” says Beth E. Mooney, chairman and chief executive officer of KeyCorp. She stresses KeyBank’s focus on helping clients and communities thrive —including balancing “mission and margin”—and ensuring all boats in their wake are rising.

“We believe when our customers do well, we do well,” Mooney said. “When our customers do well, our communities do well. This is the true balance of mission and margin.”

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Feature: Why Consciousness Is the Key

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Why Consciousness Is the Key to Unlocking Capitalism’s Greatest Potential

By Geoff Campbell and Aleksandra Corwin of Round Table Companies

 

More and more, the term “Conscious Capitalism” pops up in business and general media as the future of doing business.

But what is it, and where did the concept come from? And why is it important that businesses adopt a more “conscious” way of operating?

Conscious Capitalism started as a collaboration between academics and business leaders to articulate a better way to do business, and it is grounded in a belief that businesses truly flourish when they are organized around a greater purpose. Conscious Capitalism has now evolved into a global movement aimed at educating and inspiring business leaders to practice capitalism in its truest form.

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Member Profile: Improving

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Improving Trust in the Entire Stakeholder Chain

By Geoff Campbell and Aleksandra Corwin of Round Table Companies

 

He was working for a leading defense contractor who was having difficulty attracting information technology talent. So, he developed a business model for a proposed subsidiary he thought could solve the problem, while acting as an internal consultancy for the company.

The plan made it all the way to the top levels of the company. But then came the response: tell the software weenies to get back to work.

“They said this about employees critical to their success,” Curtis Hite recalled. He was learning firsthand the danger of ignoring the principles of Conscious Capitalism—and he proved himself an attentive student.

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Member Profile: Emerios

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The End of High-pressure Sales

How one conscious company is helping capitalism evolve

By Geoff Campbell and Aleksandra Corwin of Round Table Companies

 

When Wells Fargo employees got caught creating millions of fraudulent savings, checking, and credit card accounts for its customers without their consent, capitalism’s critics had a new poster boy.

But Jesse Crowe, founder and CEO of technology firm Emerios, said the scandal was avoidable—even if Wells Fargo’s sales culture had remained the same.

“Had Wells Fargo been using our solution, this never would have happened,” Crowe said.

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Feature: Capitalism vs. Capital Markets

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Don’t Confuse Capitalism with Capital Markets

Why the stock market doesn’t represent the true power of business

By Geoff Campbell and Aleksandra Corwin of Round Table Companies

 

To many, the stock market is synonymous with the economy and, as a result, with capitalism.

But is it?

Increasingly, those within the Conscious Capitalism orbit say no.

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Member Profile: EPOCH Pi

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EPOCH Pi: Trailblazing a new era of purpose in business

By Geoff Campbell and Aleksandra Corwin of Round Table Companies

 

Investment banker William W. Vogelgesang said it took him nearly 25 years to learn that only a small percentage of people are motivated by money.

He never thought of business as “evil,” but he’d always believed that pursuit of financial goals to the exclusion of all else “can lead to sub-optimal outcomes.” And for himself, “I was never really motivated by making lots of money.”

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Member Profile: driversselect

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Leadership with a Long-Term View:

How getting to the top requires taking a few steps back

By Agata Antonow and Aleksandra Corwin of Round Table Companies

 

The first time Brandi Beakley met Steve Hall, owner of driversselect, she was attending an event for conscious businesses with her then-employer. Hall stood out from the crowd in his “Be Transparent” shirt. In a sea of businesses concerned with social justice and the environment, his sector also made an impression.

“I found out he ran a car dealership, and I thought, ‘Who is this guy to wear a Be Transparent shirt?’” she explains. “Within a year, I had switched companies to work for him.”

driversselect CEO, Steve Hall, leading a new employee orientation meeting.

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Feature: Conscious Finance

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Not All Money is Created Equal:

The importance of funding businesses with conscious capital

By Geoff Campbell and Aleksandra Corwin of Round Table Companies

 

There comes a time in the life of a business when it needs money to grow—and while money can be fuel, it can also be fire. Investors come with strings attached, and business owners who understand the power of companies to change the world for the better are choosing their sources of funding with increasing care.

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Member Profile: Curriculum Associates

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A Conscious Approach to Teaching and Learning:  Curriculum Associates

By Agata Antonow and Aleksandra Corwin of Round Table Companies

 

Rob Waldron’s phone was ringing off the hook, and it wasn’t because his company had just made one of the 10 largest charitable donations of 2016 by gifting the majority of its shares—worth about $121 million—to the Iowa State University Foundation. “Rob?” his assistant said, peeking into the office. “Another call. It’s about that news show. Do you want to take it?”

Over 13 percent of K-8 children in the United States currently use Curriculum Associates’ software every week.

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