How Apple and 180 Other Companies Are Redefining the Purpose of a Corporation
In August 2019, Apple and 180 other companies signed a statement issued by the Business Roundtable, a group of CEOs from America's leading corporations. The statement redefined the purpose of a corporation from maximizing shareholder value to promoting \"an economy that serves all Americans\".
What does this mean for Apple and its stakeholders How does this align with Apple's vision and values And what are the implications for the future of business and society
The New Statement of Corporate Purpose
The Business Roundtable's statement of corporate purpose is a significant departure from its previous version, which was adopted in 1997 and stated that \"the paramount duty of management and of boards of directors is to the corporationâs stockholders\".
The new statement, which was signed by 181 CEOs, including Apple's Tim Cook, acknowledges that corporations have a broader responsibility to all their stakeholders, including customers, employees, suppliers, communities and shareholders. It outlines five commitments that corporations should make:
Delivering value to their customers.
Investing in their employees.
Dealing fairly and ethically with their suppliers.
Supporting the communities in which they work.
Generating long-term value for shareholders.
The statement also emphasizes the need for corporations to embrace diversity and inclusion, innovation, environmental sustainability and good governance.
Why Apple Signed the Statement
Apple has always been a company that strives to make a positive impact on the world through its products, services and values. As Tim Cook said in a letter to shareholders in 2019, \"We believe that our role in the world is to leave it better than we found it.\"
By signing the Business Roundtable's statement, Apple reaffirmed its commitment to its stakeholders and its vision of creating products that enrich people's lives. Apple also demonstrated its leadership and influence in the business community, as one of the most valuable and respected brands in the world.
Some of the ways that Apple fulfills its corporate purpose are:
Delivering value to its customers by offering high-quality products and services that are innovative, user-friendly and secure.
Investing in its employees by providing competitive compensation and benefits, opportunities for learning and development, and a culture of creativity and collaboration.
Dealing fairly and ethically with its suppliers by ensuring that they adhere to Apple's Supplier Code of Conduct, which covers labor rights, human rights, environmental standards and business integrity.
Supporting the communities in which it works by contributing to education, health, environment and social causes through initiatives such as Apple Giving, Apple Education, Apple Health and Apple Environment.
Generating long-term value for shareholders by pursuing growth opportunities, maintaining financial discipline and returning capital to shareholders through dividends and share repurchases.
The Future of Business and Society
The Business Roundtable's statement of corporate purpose reflects a growing recognition that corporations have a vital role to play in addressing the social and environmental challenges facing the world today. It also signals a shift from a short-term, profit-driven mindset to a long-term, stakeholder-oriented one.
This shift has implications for both business and society. For business, it means that corporations need to balance the interests of multiple stakeholders and measure their performance not only by financial metrics but also by social and environmental ones. It also means that corporations need to engage more actively with their stakeholders and communicate more transparently about their goals, actions and impacts.
For society, it means that corporations can be a force for good and contribute to solving some of the most pressing issues such as climate change, inequality, poverty and human rights. It also means that society can hold corporations accountable for their actions and demand that they uphold their commitments.
Apple and 180 other companies have redefined the purpose of a corporation to promote \"an economy that serves all Americans\". This is a bold and visionary move that reflects Apple's core values and vision. It also sets an example for other corporations to follow and challenges them to rethink their role in the world. a474f39169