People AND Profit? Think Fink.

People and Profit are shaping up as emerging business themes for 2018. Many of you have heard or read Larry Fink’s (BlackRock) Letter to CEO’s. In this letter, Larry says, “…society increasingly is turning to the private sector and asking that companies respond to broader societal challenges. Indeed, the public expectations of your company have never been greater.  Society is demanding that companies, both public and private, serve a social purpose. To prosper over time, every company must not only deliver financial performance, but also show how it makes a positive contribution to society. Companies must benefit all of their stakeholders, including shareholders, employees, customers, and the communities in which they operate."

Similarly, in a January 2018 conversation with Rick Wartzman, contributing author to The Wall Street Journal, Fortune, Time and FastCompany, Dave Bookbinder says, “We've found time and again that companies that invest in their people really do see improvements in key performance indicators and outperform their peers. Notice the shift in perspective from incurring expenses around human capital to investing in people.”  In our own recent experiences, including a January 23rd event with the Manufacturers Resource Center's CFO Forum, deep and engaging discussions are emerging around enhancing organizational value through investment in people, and an acknowledgement that there is an imperative greater than maximization of profits as the only acceptable business outcome.

Larry Fink, along with CEO Chris Snider of the Exit Planning Institute, argue that purpose is a critical component of individual and organizations success and fulfillment. “Without a sense of purpose, no company, either public or private, can achieve its full potential. It will ultimately lose the license to operate from key stakeholders. It will succumb to short-term pressures to distribute earnings, and, in the process, sacrifice investments in employee development, innovation, and capital expenditures that are necessary for long-term growth.” (Larry Fink, 2018)

We invite you to explore these ideas in greater detail and to challenge yourself and your business to adopt new approaches to [human] capital investing. Clearly articulating your personal and professional purpose(s) is a great place to start. If you’re not sure how to begin this process, please give us a call. 29BISON offers a proven set of activities to get you to your ‘purpose’ quickly and efficiently. Imagine your business at full potential!

Snider, C. (2016). Walking to Destiny: 11 Actions an Owner MUST Take to Rapidly Grow Value & Unlock Wealth [Kindle iOS version]. Retrieved from

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