This piece is co-authored with Rhett Buttle, Founder of Public Private Strategies & Senior Fellow at the Aspen Institute, and Alison Omens of JUST Capitol, and was originally published on Forbes on 6/1/20. Click here to access the full article.
“2020 was always going to be the year for business leadership to tackle huge societal challenges. More than 180 of the nation’s leading CEOs signed the Business Roundtable’s new statement of purpose late last year, committing to run companies serving their workers, customers, suppliers, and the environment. Increasingly CEOs were speaking publicly about embracing stakeholder capitalism.
And then coronavirus (COVID-19) hit. Its dramatic onset exposed a public health crisis. But it also exacerbated the fundamental shortcomings of our government institutions and economy, particularly on communities of color. The opportunity for business leadership has emerged extraordinarily sharply. Individual business leaders are already seizing the leadership mantle on this issue. Yet there is a once-in-a-generation opportunity to do far more. CEOs and corporate leaders should be engaging directly with federal, state, and local governments to rebuild an economy that rewards taking care of workers, customers, and communities. “