How can big business possibly account for the million of dollars in losses before a problem is recognized?
I was recently on Fox Business News and I was asked some very important questions about the responsibility of big business. Realizing that I had only three minutes of airtime, I had to think fast and I welcomed the challenge.
The Ethics Gap
Small business ethics are the very thing that built this country and perhaps big business could learn to embrace some old school tactics. Big business must be concerned about the bottom line, and in doing so, customer satisfaction and safety can suffer, as some car manufacturers have learned over the years.
Small business is concerned about every dollar. They have to be. Their family depends on it. Their employees’ families depend on it. Children need clothes. Doctor bills don’t wait, and insurance, taxes and payroll are serious day-to-day concerns.
Big business loses millions and the question is always: What should be done?
If a small business lost any money at all in a given month it could mean shutting down everything. Big business hopes for a better day. What the heck happened to all that money? Who is responsible?
There’s no way to responsibly reverse such huge losses. If any catastrophic loss happens to a small business it would result in complete failure.
Same Problems, Higher Stakes
In this world it matters that customers are happy, service is priced fairly and tasks completed correctly. Millions of dollars represent the blood, sweat and tears of the people who paid out their hard earned cash to purchase inventory and service.
Big business scratches its heads and points the finger at economic challenges that have nothing to do with quality control. Some heads roll, others are hired and we do it all over again. That’s no way to respect such magnificent gifts.
Corporations provide jobs for so many people.
There’s no excuse. With such large amounts of money and a huge payroll, how could such losses happen? Easy. Mismanagement, not paying attention, not caring and most of all: No love for the corporation itself and the customers who pay with their hard earned money to support the entity.
Who trained the employees that have caused such losses? What part of the establishment didn’t recognize millions of dollars slipping through the cracks everyday? This is sublime dishonor.
Big Business Turnaround?
It’s high time that there be a giant turnaround in big business attitudes. Loving and caring for something that generates revenue is no different than caring for your children. Paying attention to each sneeze, cough, harsh word, homework assignment. It’s a very simple concept.
I liken it to the difference between babysitting and nurturing. The relationship between a babysitter and a child is nearly inconsequential. A person shows up, parents leave, a child plays in their room, a sitter watches television. Both parties gain little or nothing. Both parties are for the most part unchanged by the engagement and the time spent yields very little money nor quality time.
On the other hand, nurturing a child or a corporation provides undivided attention, long-term relationship and a broad spectrum of teachings.
In the case of a child, real nurturing offers a chance at a real life. In the case of a corporation, it is a chance at a long-term financially successful enterprise that serves people in the company and has an on going supply of loyal customers for generations to come.
In our babysitting example, the long and the short of it is clear:
- Babysitting doesn’t change people at all.
- Nurturing changes two or more people irrevocably for the better, forever.
- Love is eternal, long term and strong enough to yield throughout many generations.
- Care for your customers first.
- Care for your family first.
- Care for your corporation and your customers as if they are your family.
It is essentially the same for the responsibility of a CEO. America was built on these principles and we need to remember them. Or as my tween would say, “Duh.”