In the past, most companies have been anchored on greed solely focused on maximizing profits for its owners and stakeholders. However, a new approach is starting to evolve today with what Global Business Leader & Author, Shawn Vij calls the "Millennial Moral Leader."
Millennials now make up the largest segment of the workforce and they are looking to put their money where their values are. By the year 2025, millennials are expected to amount to 75% of the total workforce. India would eventually have the largest millennial workforce in the world. This would result in an increase in consumption pushing the economy to grow. By 2025, it is estimated that India will be a USD $5 trillion economies.
According to a new report by 5W Public Relations, 83% of Millennials find it important for the companies they buy from to align with their values. About 71 percent of Millennials will pay more for goods that funnel some proceeds to charity, and 67 percent of that age group say it's important that a brand they're buying from has a charitable component, according to the report.
In addition, as more and more millennials climb management ranks a new cultural evolution is taking place. A shift in mindset from profits to 'purpose + profits.' Today, people want to buy from companies that have a purpose grounded in values. Most companies are designed to make profit, but they are now adapting to meet new social and political expectations. We are starting to see a shift from cut-throat business to conscious capitalism as more millennials enter and rise in the workplace.
As Vij states, "If our only goal is to make money at no cost, then we're bound to harm others and ourselves in pursuit of those things. When this happens, we've used excessive greed to cripple our value system."
We have an opportunity to re-set how we define capitalism. Conscious capitalism is on the rise, and companies that put their values at the core will not only succeed in long term profits but also raise the human condition. The concept is anchored on stakeholders versus shareholders. Corporations that think long-term understand this message and are adapting to this cultural shift quickly. People want to buy from companies that have a MORAL purpose grounded on human values.
As Jamsetji Tata, founder of Tata Group once said, "the community is not just another stakeholder in the business but in fact the very purpose of its existence." We are seeing a shift where companies are taking a strong position and acting on their core values which come from listening to the collective voice of their diverse set of employees, customers, and communities.
As Vij states, "I am a pure capitalist and believe everyone deserves the opportunity to make a lot of money. The difference is on 'how' we do it and the Millennial Moral Leader gets that concept quickly."
What if companies just had a simple underlying mission, which was making people's lives better around the world. To do that, Vij claims we need to reformulate the criteria of business success and make it about humanity and ethics, not adjuncts to profit, but it's very core."
Shawn Vij argues in his latest book, Moral Fiber with a foreword by the Dalai Lama that it is about 'being' a conscious business that raises the overall human condition. It is not about philanthropy or corporate social responsibility but rather about always being a conscious business. It's about each of us doing the right thing always. We all have choices. And it is upon employees, customers, and communities to help reclaim and re-discover these values.