Creating Social Value Blog / Corporate Social Relevance

Michael Kliska – Good Business Defined

By Michael Kliska, Babson Undergraduate student. This post is the first in a 4 part series building on the conversations at Good Business Fridays by providing a platform for Babson Undergraduate students to reflect on what “Good Business” means or has come to mean to them.

Good business…what does that mean? Is it being ethical? socially responsible? environmentally friendly? What do those terms even mean?

Those are the thoughts that go through many of our heads when any talk of “good business” is mentioned.  I have analyzed its meaning and deliberated carefully about how I view that term.  In my mind, good business is defined by impact on society.  Society needs to be a better place solely because you exist as an entity.  This doesn’t mean that your business creates cool products or donates a percentage of its profit to charity.  Although those things are great, it doesn’t equate to the effect of the company on the surrounding community while performing its day-to-day operations.  What I am really talking about is taking a responsible stance on utilizing resources. That means providing a high quality of life for employees, not extorting unreplenishable raw materials, and making sure that the communities surrounding your facilities are not faced with negative externalities of production.

So where does Babson Good Business come into play? Our role is to incorporate those ideologies into Babson businesses during their formation.  We want to give business owners the framework to understand their impact on society and to make good decisions.  We want them to know that consumers are increasingly demanding “good business.” Soon it won’t be a point of differentiation for companies, it will be a requirement to do business.  The quicker we can instill that thought process into the fabric of Babson College, the better our students and world will be for it.