Companies have discovered the secret to hiring talented young professionals and cultivating a culture where innovation and engagement are a thriving driver of business. And it’s not free lunch, nap pods, or weekly happy hours (though all of those are certainly perks). It’s embedding real, tangible purpose in the business—solving social problems through the principles of capitalism. It’s building a new economy with emerging leaders, and it’s called:
Examples of shared value in action:
Seventh Generation’s approach to minimizing the distance their products travel on the way to market is an excellent example of shared value.
By focusing on situating a number of distribution centers at central locations, Seventh Generation saves on transportation costs while the Earth saves on transportation emissions. It’s a win-win, and it also improves the company’s speed to market.
Overall, companies are finding that not only does doing good attract top talent, but it also pays for itself. After CVS banned tobacco product sales in pharmacies, the company’s operating profit increased by 4%. The value created by such a move is shared—people’s physical health improves, and so does CVS’s financial health. What’s more, people trust companies that walk the talk. We all need to ask ourselves—what are we saying about our company that we can do a better job of actually doing?
Different ways to create shared value:
Shared value is quickly becoming recognized as a leading management strategy for businesses, particularly when it comes to measuring corporate responsibility, attracting top talent, and strengthening the brand, not to mention improving profits and increasing revenue.