I run a business and am always curious how profit is portrayed as something inherently bad. I don’t believe it is necessarily the case. I believe this notion actually allows ‘profit-makers’ to think that they are allowed to discount the wider consequences of their activities. “The ‘not-for-profit’ sector deal with that fluffy stuff…” It reinforces the notion that caring people are hypocrites if they make money, thereby making it less likely that they will acquire an asset base with which they could challenge the status quo.
All business should internalise its externalities.
Not all profitable business is zero-sum game.
So let’s liberate the word ‘profit’ from its bad-boy tag.
(posted on RSA Fellows Network discussion group ‘Profit with Purpose’)