If you’re interested in a career in business, there are probably a few things you hope for: success, interesting work, and perhaps to become a leader in your industry. However, there is something else you can do as well, particularly if you plan to run your own business, and that’s contributed to improving the world. While some might argue that the profit motive should be supreme, many people find it satisfying to work toward other values-based goals as well. As far as profit goes, there is still an advantage: Some customers and clients will specifically seek you out because of your mission.
Define Your Terms
What it means to make the world a better place will mean different things to different people, so your first step is to define your terms. You can change things with just a vague idea of doing good in the world. Think about your values and what specific improvements you’d like to make. Maybe you are concerned about animal welfare or the environment. Maybe you want to support the arts, help disadvantaged children get a better education or promote exercise and public health. Some businesses have a strong community focus. It’s possible that you may simply want a focus on service, which could take different forms at different times.
Get Your Degree
It’s easier to succeed in business with a degree than without one. In part, this is because many companies require a degree for entry-level positions or to advance. However, there are also many advantages to getting a college education. You can learn a great deal about business, and you may also want to minor in the area you’ve decided you’d like to focus on. You may want to study fine arts, environmental education, or even fundraising. The cost of getting a degree can make college seem like a difficult or impossible hurdle for many people, but you can go online to search and apply for college scholarships. This can reduce the amount that you must take out in loans and therefore how much debt you graduate with.
Consider Specific Mechanisms
Your next step is to consider how exactly you want to improve the world based on your values. Keep in mind this could mean making some hard choices. You could transition towards green suppliers or decide that there are certain clients or companies that you won’t work with, but that will mean that you make less money. If you make more money by working with those entities that you disapprove of and you’ve decided to donate a certain percentage of your profits to the cause that you believe in, you can give more. There are no easy answers, and of course, this is not the only way to make a difference. You might encourage a sense of service among employees, giving them what is known as volunteer time off. Another option might be doing periodic projects for free. If you are a graphic design firm, you might periodically do some free work for a community organisation.