It’s very easy to think about the long-term considerations of a business and what their practical habits might imply for the future. For instance, a business with good financial management and a valuable, proprietary product, well-marketed, is likely to succeed. Yet it’s also true that sometimes, a business is much more than what it has written down on paper. From the principles to espouse and those you actively follow, to how you treat your staff, to what kind of management style you occupy, sometimes a ‘successful’ business might not be worth its salt.
We can see this in some industries. Blizzard, one of the biggest computer gaming companies in the market, has recently lost nine points of its stock valuation thanks to widespread reports of discrimination and harassment within their ranks, which, amazingly, has led to them being sued by the state of California. This begs the question, how can your business define itself outside of paper success, and what kind of culture or self-evident principles do you construct a business with to mean its ongoing continuation will be justified? Let’s consider that, below:
Staff safety is, of course, one of the foremost elements to consider. But it’s essential to understand this in all of its forms, rather than just keeping them safe and secure at the office. For instance, protecting their data online should be considered essential, as staff in a public-facing firm should not have to worry about having their identity unveiled simply because of bad management. Making sure staff are protected against abuse from the public is also essential. This means keeping a competent reporting system in place, and treating issues with the utmost confidence via a strong and supportive HR department. And of course, regular investments, such as making sure your fire alarm installation is perfectly applied, is more crucial than anything else.
While we cannot control every aspect of how our employees treat and socialize with one another, we can focus on the larger aspects of how our workplace culture is defined. For instance, making sure that no abuse is tolerated in the slightest, making sure that your workplace is an inclusive entity that permits anyone to be there no matter their personal identifiers, and ensuring that your staff are able to report abuse or harassment in any manner at all can be essential.
The company principles your firm orients itself to are essential to consider. Perhaps you hope to champion sustainability in your industry. That’s a great idea, and serves as a principle you can focus on. Instead of being vocal about every social issue or seemingly paying lip service to anything that gets you in the public discourse, defining the principles important to your firm and really working towards those can help you achieve something of worth, even if that’s just investing in your local area. This way, you can define your business as more than just a profit-seeking entity, but a force for some sort of good, too. Consumers want this more than ever.
With this advice, you’re more likely to assess if your business continues to be worth its salt.