Whew! How do we cope with this newly invited elephant in the room?
That’s what Chief Executive Officers must be feeling today after a group of more than 180 leading chief executive officers of large corporations broadened the scope, significance and purpose of a corporation.
Now more hands than ever before could be in the proverbial cookie jar at the same time.
No longer can CEOs focus solely on “Maxmizing Profits” –the prevailing purpose of a corporation for nearly 50 years — that has governed CEO decision making.
Now in making business decisions CEOs have to keep all other stakeholders — from employees to customers to suppliers etc. in mind –as well as stockholders and the communities they serve.
Yes, indeed, conflicting priorities just got supersized. Big time!
That’s the immediate impact of the historic statement the Business Roundtable issued on August 19, 2019 that will no doubt change the way business is taught in colleges and the way business is conducted on Main Street and Wall Street in the future.
But how do you factor in additional priorities when already 64% of 1,800 executives in a Booz & Company survey cited “too many conflicting priorities” as their biggest frustration factor BEFORE the Business Roundtable’s decision.
How do you balance the needs of all those various stakeholders –including stockholders — pushing and tugging on your bottom line?
Imagine thinking of your company or organization as if it were a bicycle. Chances are you will initially be attracted to how many gears you can employee or the efficiency in the grip of the handle bars and pedals on your speed.
But the effective CEO knows that without alignment your bicycle of a corporation will wobble off course.
That’s why the most astute CEOs wheel and deal.
They consider each of 28 spokes around the rim of his or her “bicycle wheel” as if they each represented a different constituent, a different stakeholder, a different public.
Pull too much on the spoke for investors and their demands for increased dividends and you loosen the spoke for employees and their demands for less costly health care.
Then your rim –like any organization pulled and tugged in contradictory directions—surrenders its balance. And you are out of control.
So how do you maintain that balance and help your company stay true to its mission and continued growth and profitability despite so many conflicting priorities?
The most effective leaders serve the needs of one group without compromising on the need of other groups. If one is tighten one spoke then another reciprocating spoke must be loosened. Balance is the key to an even more profitable balance sheet in the future.
To learn more about balancing the needs of various stakeholders, purchase a 300-page book now available on Amazon. com filled with 77 short stories (5-minute reads called Leadership Mints) on examples from business, sports and politics.
It’s titled: LOVING Like a Leader with Empathy– one of three books in The Leadership Mints Series designed to help leaders refresh their feeling for leading. And as a bonus, the postscript titled– BUSINESS: A HUMAN EXPERIENCE — shares the impetus for this book on empathy impacting the bottom line.
The two other books in The Leadership Mints Series -now available on Amazon.com — — include THINKING Like a Leader with Clarity and SPEAKING Like a Leader with Civility
All three books in The Leadership Mints Series are designed for busy leaders seeking to refresh their feeling for leading in 5-minutes or less — the average reading of a Leadership Mint.
What ‘s a Leadership Mint?
Consumed like a breath mint — quick and on-the-go — a Leadership Mint is a short story that energizes leadership behaviors and personalizes leadership principles so they are more easily remembered, more readily acted upon and more fully applied.