Archives for posts with tag: Company

Who’s the most important stakeholder in any organisation? If you’re in the private sector is it your partners or your customers? If you’re in the public sector is it the people who use your services, like the general public, or is the local and national government entities? If you’re in the charity sector is it your funders, your donors, or your clients?

The answer for all three types of employer is the same: none of them.

You are the key stakeholder. You and your colleagues determine your organisation’s ethic, its culture, its brand. You are responsible for making people aware of your products and services, getting them to use them, delivering those products and services to them, sorting out problems for them.

Having the right staff in place, the good ones like you, will take care of your customers, clients, partners, suppliers, funders, donors, volunteers  – all the other stakeholders that make up your industry or community.

When it comes to stakeholders – to adopt a well-known car-maker – you are job 1 .

Did you know that the crowd-funding site Kickstarter is now a benefit corporation? I didn’t either, until I got an email explaining what one was and why they decided to become one.

You see, Kickstarter found that being a for-profit corporation went against the ethos of what they were trying to do, namely be a force for social change. They go on to say:

“Companies that believe there are more important goals than maximizing shareholder value have been at odds with the expectation that for-profit companies must exist ultimately for profit above all.

“Benefit Corporations are different. Benefit Corporations are for-profit companies that are obligated to consider the impact of their decisions on society, not only shareholders. Radically, positive impact on society becomes part of a Benefit Corporation’s legally defined goals.”

What a fantastic concept, and an equally noble one at that. Sadly, only 0.01% of US organisations are currently benefit corporations, a statistic I feel will rapidly change.

If you’d like to read more, here’s Kickstarter’s benefit corporation charter. Fair play to them, as the Irish would say.