On 24 January 2019, YPO hosted an event and panel discussion, Profit with Purpose: A New Global Model, in Davos, Switzerland. It brought together chief executives with leaders from governments, corporations and NGOs to share perspectives on the positive impact of business in creating a better world. YPO member and Founder of Entrepreneurial Giving, Maurice Ostro led the passion-fueled discussion focused on how businesses can work better together, work better with governments and work better with other organizations to truly be a meaningful force for good.
Led by moderator Maurice Ostro, the esteemed panel of global leaders kept the discussion focused on concepts that are broader than one organization or one company. The only way to make a lasting impact is to make sure this idea or this movement of creating businesses that are forces for good reaches beyond the audience that was present in Davos.
“To make true impact, we have to recognize that none of us can do it alone — not governments, not NGOs and not businesses,” says Ostro. “The only way to succeed, the only way to make a meaningful impact is to collaborate.”
And there’s no better place to start a chain reaction of change and positive impact than through the 27,000 members of YPO — heads of businesses, NGOs and industries around the world.
“The question we must ask ourselves,” says Ostro, “is how do we use our business strength to create impact.”
The event also featured small-group breakouts to encourage deeper discussion and surface specific ideas to address seven areas of concern identified by the panel. The dialog highlighted the following thoughts from participants:
Some of the interesting conversation around education included allowing corporations to create opportunities for students from the developing world. This could enable students to come in, learn how businesses work, interact with executives, and really get a sense of how things work so that once they graduate from school, they are able to enter the workforce and bring previously untapped potential.
Businesses go toward the path of least resistance and will do things like allocating resources in major metropolitan areas rather than smaller cities and rural areas. Business leaders shouldn’t be waiting on government to set minimum wages. Businesses should take the lead for instance when it comes to employee pay and setting threshold standards for income.
Conflict Prevention, Peace and Security
There were many different approaches suggested for addressing the issue of peace. It was discussed that teaching entrepreneurship can be a driver of peace, and that we should hold each other accountable for accomplishing objectives we set for ourselves.
Climate change must be addressed via business. It’s the only way to scale solutions. We should incentivize businesses through public and private partnerships. There is a need to create a global, open-source platform for information sharing.
Infrastructure and Industrial Growth
Globalization is not only an ideal, but in fact, already a reality. It was discussed that the core infrastructure needed in the world is still education. We need to be part of building intellectual constructs for globalization.
To read more about how YPO members are making a difference, visit our Social Impact page.