These days, more and more consumers are demanding that companies have a higher purpose than just pursuing profit. They want to see their favorite companies incorporate practices that support environmental sustainability, non-profits, and the well-being of others into their business model.
What exactly does that mean for businesses, and how can a conscious business model be used to meet the changing demand of consumers?
What is Conscious Capitalism®?
The Conscious Capitalist Credo states that “We believe that business is good because it creates value, it is ethical because it is based on voluntary exchange, it is noble because it can elevate our existence and it is heroic because it lifts people out of poverty and creates prosperity. Free enterprise capitalism is the most powerful system for social cooperation and human progress ever conceived. It is one of the most compelling ideas we humans have ever had. But we can aspire to even more.”
This concept challenges the traditional profit-maximizing business paradigm by giving more weight to a business’s broader relationships with their stakeholders, defined as those they interact with. This includes the people around them, their consumers, and the environment.
Capitalists are sometimes painted as greedy, pursuing short-term gains and neglecting potential consequences to stakeholders like employees, climate, or society. When negative examples of capitalism, like the Wall Street crisis of 2008 or Volkswagen’s diesel scandal are all that’s in the media, the good that for-profit companies can bring into the world is often overlooked.
This pursuit of “conscious capitalism” that entrepreneurs are pushing for is bringing real change to the business world.
Conscious Capitalism in the Free Market
In a free market, the customer has the power. When consumers purchase products from ecologically responsible sources, they vote for environmental sustainability with their dollar, and producers must evolve to meet their demands.
For example, consumers are starting to purchase more and more humanely raised meats and dairy from local farmers – even at a higher cost. Sustainably-raised animals had their sales jump 17% in 2017 alone.
Being a conscious capitalist isn’t just about serving a higher purpose, it’s good business. Businesses that feature a more altruistic mission are reaping the rewards as consumer behavior evolves.
Capitalism in the Workplace and Classroom
Conscious Capitalism is not just a demand of consumers. Employees are also insisting that their companies become conscious leaders.
Among millennial employees in startup industries, conscientiousness is trending. Statistics show that 67% of millennials are more engaged at work when they strongly agree with the mission or purpose of their company.
As new graduates head into a more conscious workplace, educators are looking for ways to incorporate and teach conscious practices in their business courses. A prepared business student is one who understands how consciously-driven practices are affecting economies, businesses, and workplaces.
Conscious Capitalism Simulation
The Conscious Capitalism simulation by Marketplace is a great way for professors to teach the importance of all stakeholders to students across a variety of majors.
The game allows students and employees to participate in hands-on learning by testing their business knowledge in a virtual risk-free world. Success is determined by the individual’s ability to incorporate Conscious practices effectively in balance with profits.
Learn more Conscious Capitalism® by visiting www.marketplace-simulation.com/conscious-capitalism-bikes.