Purpose-Driven Business–Big Corporations Join the Club!
Big news–181 CEOs of the largest corporations in the US just signed a new statement of corporate purpose, turning the old model of shareholder primacy on its head. For years, corporations have operated under Milton Friedman’s idea that “there is only one social responsibility of business–to use its resources and engage in activities designed to increase its profits so long as it stays within the rules of the game, which is to say, engages in open and free competition without deception or fraud.”
The model described in the new statement endorsed by The Business Roundtable is one many small businesses have been using for a long time. The new statement explains that a corporation has a responsibility to its customers, suppliers, community, and employees. In other words, corporations are responsible and committed to stakeholders before shareholders.
It’s a step in the right direction for the big guys, and we hope they put action behind their words, but to the folks here at AM Transport (and many other small purpose-driven businesses) the statement isn’t all that radical. It’s how we’ve been doing business all along.
Let’s take a look at what the corporations are promising and what we already do.
Big corporations commit to:
“Deliver value to our customers.”
Here at AM Transport, delivering value to our customers is our main priority. How do we do that? By offering the best customer service available in the logistics industry. We answer our own phones. We’re available 24/7/365 days a year. We invest in and implement technology solutions unique to our customers’ needs. We track all shipments from pickup to delivery, and we provide reporting and data analysis to streamline processes and boost efficiency. Our managed freight services take the worry out of transportation.
“Investing in employees.”
At AM Transport, we work as a team. We are a flat organization–that means that each and every team member has the autonomy to make informed and quick decisions. We work, and play, together. Our culture promotes collaboration instead of competition.
“Dealing fairly and ethically with our suppliers.”
Small to midsize carriers are the lifeblood of the transportation industry. And we partner with the best fleets out there. That’s because we understand and respect the necessary work carriers and drivers do to keep our economy humming. We offer quick pay for all loads, we always pay detention, and we’re available 24/7/365.
“Supporting the communities in which we work.”
Community involvement is a principle we live by at AM Transport. Not only do we, as a team, invest in our community by sponsoring the CEO Program, the 5th block program at the Middle School, and a variety of other projects, but individual team members volunteer time to a variety of community initiatives. It’s integral to our mission. Giving back is the right thing to do.
“Generating long-term value for shareholders.”
Shareholders are important, but what we’ve found is that when we focus on our customers, our carriers, our team members, and our community, everybody wins.
We welcome big corporations to our way of doing business.
If they live up to these great ideals, we’ll all be better off for it. But the truth is, here at AM Transport, we’ve been following these tenets for a long time, and we plan to continue leading the way!