Can "Conscious Capitalism" Result in Greater Profit?
Whole Foods CEO John Mackey thinks companies that pay competitive wages and focus on "higher purpose" in customer interactions will ultimately create the most value for their shareholders.
Whole Foods CEO John Mackey is spearheading a business movement that calls for a more "conscious" capitalism. He believes that companies that focus on "higher purpose" will ultimately be the most profitable for shareholders.
His plan involves shifting priority from return on investment to practices that will benefit all of a company's stakeholders—including employees, customers, suppliers, and even the communities in which business is located. Mackey says businesses should create value for employees through better-than-industry-average wages, benefits, and opportunities. Employees will then be motivated to create value for the customers and suppliers through better service, and the company will, in turn, do more and better business—creating value for investors.
For Mackey, it’s the face-to-face interactions between employees and customers—and between buyers and suppliers—that form what he calls the "higher purpose" of increasing value. Customers will a pay a little more and drive the extra mile, and suppliers will work toward better deals, for better, more personal interactions.
"When you work from a higher purpose you unleash greater degrees of commitment, greater degrees of loyalty and greater creativity in the workplace and that gives competitive advantage," says Mackey.
Other proponents of this kind of "conscious" capitalism include CEO Kip Tindell of The Container Store, who echoes Mackey, saying: "People think that we’re just being altruistic. No. If all you wanted to do was to make as much money as possible, as rapidly as possible, I would submit to you that this methodology is the best way to get there.” Like Whole Foods, The Container Store has had sustained growth while consistently being listed among FORTUNE's 100 Best Companies to Work For.
— Big Think interview with Doug Rauch, former president of Trader Joe's.
— Big Think interview with Lawrence Koh, CEO of International Diversified Products.
— Mackey, J. "The Whole Foods Alternative to ObamaCare." Wall Street Journal.
- The meaning of the word 'confidence' seems obvious. But it's not the same as self-esteem.
- Confidence isn't just a feeling on your inside. It comes from taking action in the world.
- Join Big Think Edge today and learn how to achieve more confidence when and where it really matters.
- Bad outcomes get criticized as evidence of bad decisions, but that's not necessarily so.
- Here, poker pro Annie Duke desribes a simple thought experiment that separates decisions from outcomes.
- It is quite possible to make a very good decision that, due to external factors, results in a bad outcome.
Decide to Play Great Poker: A Strategy Guide to No-Limit Texas Hold '’Em
Lauren Miranda sent a nude selfie to a boyfriend years ago. Somehow one of her students discovered it.
- Math teacher Lauren Miranda was fired from her Long Island school when a topless selfie surfaced.
- Miranda had only shared the photo with her ex-boyfriend, who is also a teacher in the school district.
- She's suing the school for $3 million as well as getting her job back, citing gender discrimination.
If you're lacking confidence and feel like you could benefit from an ego boost, try writing your life story.
In truth, so much of what happens to us in life is random – we are pawns at the mercy of Lady Luck. To take ownership of our experiences and exert a feeling of control over our future, we tell stories about ourselves that weave meaning and continuity into our personal identity.
SMARTER FASTER trademarks owned by The Big Think, Inc. All rights reserved.